IBI Digest: 11/17/13 - 11/23/13
Recapping the week on Indians Baseball Insider
The Indians made their first big splash of the offseason by signing free agent outfielder David Murphy to a two-year deal and the IBI staff has their analysis of the signing and predictions of the team's next move. In the offseason leagues, Tyler Naquin and the Surprise Saguaros celebrated an AFL Championship while Jesus Aguilar has begun to snap out of his slump. Plus, round two of Tribe Madness is now underway.
Here's what else happened this week on IBI:
2013 40-man roster review: Who do the Indians add?: As the MLB roster deadline approaches, who will the Tribe most likely add and who will be left off? Tony Lastoria looks at the potential candidates who could be added to the 40-man roster.
Breakout Barometer: Jesus Aguilar: In the first edition of a new IBI feature, Tony Lastoria looks at the prospects who have already or are on the verge of having a breakout season. Jesus Aguilar had a breakout season in 2013. See if Tony believes whether or not it's sustainable.
Around the Farm: November 16, 2013: It was a big night for Tyler Naquin, Joe Wendle and the rest of the Surprise Saguaros as they were crowned 2013 AFL champions. Elsewhere, Erik Gonzalez picked up a pair of hits and an RBI while Bryan Price picked up another save. Tony Lastoria recaps the action.
2014 MLB Free Agency: Where the Top 50 sign Part 2: Resident Hot Stove guru Andy Nichols has the second installment of his two-part free agent rundown for this offseason with predictions of where they will sign, including where free agent Tribe hurlers Ubaldo Jimenez and Scott Kazmir will land.
Should Ryan Raburn play every day?: In search for a power bat, Tribe should look at Raburn first. Jim Berdysz explains why the Tribe's fourth outfielder in 2013 should get consideration for more regular playing time moving forward.
Around The Farm: November 17, 2013: It appears Jesus Aguilar may be finally getting back on track as he has now homered in two straight games and picked up three hits and three RBI in that span. Jose Ramirez continued his strong offseason at the plate picking up three hits, although he also was caught stealing. Arthur Kinney reports.
Tribe Madness: Municipal Stadium Region Round 2 results: Round two is underway and the Municipal Stadium Region has their results in. Rick Lamborn has all the tournament analysis as he recaps who advances to the next round.
Winter Ball Notebook: Surprise wins AFL title: Tyler Naquin plays key role in leading the Saguaros to the AFL's top prize. Naquin and eight other Tribe prospects had the pleasure of joining the rest of the Surprise squad in celebrating an AFL championship.
Around the Farm: November 18, 2013: It was a quiet night in the winter ball leagues in more ways than one as only Erik Gonzalez represented the Tribe on Monday and went 0-for-5 with four strikeouts. Michael Hattery takes a look at Gonzalez's rough night at the plate in a brief edition of ATF.
MLB News and Rumors: Hudson signs with the Giants: In his daily Hot Stove recap, Andy Nichols discusses the Giants signing veteran starter Tim Hudson, who had been on the Tribe's radar, and the other latest news and notes from around the trade and free agent markets.
Swinging for the Fences: Looking at the lefties: Which southpaws will be pitching in the Tribe bullpen in 2014? With the departure of Rich Hill, the Indians will head into the offseason and 2014 in need of at least one go-to matchup lefty in the bullpen. Jake Dungan takes a look at the current in-house candidates who chould be up for consideration.
Johnson aims to keep improving: After making solid progress in 2013, Indians right-handed relief prospect Jeff Johnson is looking to take the next step forward in his journey toward the major leagues. Tony Lastoria discusses how the right-hander has gotten this far and what lies ahead.
Around the Farm: November 19, 2013: Jesus Aguilar recorded a hit in his third straight game as indications continue to point to him coming out of his recent slump. Meanwhile, Erik Gonzalez also got back on track with a hit on Tuesday snapping a two-game skid. Arthur Kinney has all the highlights.
MLB News and Rumors: Indians land Murphy: Andy Nichols is happy to report that the biggest Hot Stove news on Wednesday was the Indians signing free agent outfielder David Murphy to a two-year deal. Check out all the details as well as other news from around the league.
David Murphy joins the party at the Corner of Carnegie & Ontario: So what exactly does the David Murphy signing mean for the Indians and where do they go from here? Jim Pete looks at the Indians' first major offseason acquisition from all angles and analyzes the positives and negatives he brings.
Around the Farm: November 20, 2013: Aguilar's new hit streak continues, but it was only one hit out of five at-bats on Wednesday. However, Erik Gonzalez kept swinging a hot bat in Dominican Winter League as he picked up a pair of hits and RBI. Michael Goodman looks at all that and more.
MLB News and Rumors: Tigers, Rangers swap stars: Every offseason is usually known for the "big trade". On Thursday, the Tigers and Rangers may have completed the 2013-2014 version of just that by swapping star playersPrince Fielder and Ian Kinsler. Andy Nichols looks at all the day's Hot Stove action.
Trend Spotting: The value of David Murphy and closing doors: So what does the signing of David Murphy mean from a sabremetrics standpoint? Well fortunately, IBI has Michael Hattery to do such analysis. See how he breaks down the value of the signing in his weekly feature.
Around the Farm: November 21, 2013: With Dominican Winter League off on Thursday, there wasn't much to cover as far as Indians prospects. In Puerto Rico, Roberto Perez is still looking for his first winter ball hit . Elsewhere, Tony Lastoria checks in on old friends Ezequiel Carrera, Hector Rondon and Jon Meloan.
MLB News and Rumors: Baseball loses a leader: On Thursday, MLBPA executive director Michael Weiner lost his battle to brain cancer. Andy Nichols conveys his condolences for the loss of a great man in baseball as well as the latest Hot Stove news.
Weighing the pros and cons of the David Murphy signing: So what exactly are the positives and negatives of signing David Murphy? Jeff Ellis outlines the pros and cons and how he can best help the Tribe.
Tribe Madness: Stadium Region Round 2 results: Mel Harder and Luis Tiant were among the players who advanced in round two of the Stadium Region. Rick Lamborn recaps all the latest Tribe Madness action.
The Ultimate Indians Draft: Rounds 40-31: Jeff Ellis continues to pull from past Indians drafts to construct the Ultimate Indians Draft, detailing the best picks of each round. In this installment, Jeff looks at rounds 40-31 and lists their top picks.
Tribe Madness: League Park Region Round 2 results: The second round of Tribe Madness continue and Rick Lamborn is here to recap the League Park Region matchups. Jim Thome, Travis Hafner and Napoleon Lajoie highlighted this round's winners.
Jake Dungan is a communications student at Stark State College and an intern with the Akron RubberDucks. Follow him on Twitter @MajorLeagueJake.