IBI Digest: 11/24/13 - 11/30/13
Recapping the week on Indians Baseball Insider
This holiday week, the IBI staff gives thanks for things both baseball and non-baseball related, including the great writers and loyal readers who have made this site as successful as it has become. In addition, Andy Nichols keeps readers up to date on the latest Hot Stove news and rumors, including the departure of former Indians setup man Joe Smith to Los Angeles. Also check out the the latest from the winter ball campaign and the Tribe Madness tournament.
Here's what happened this week on IBI:
Breaking down the 2013 Akron pitchers with Edwin Rodriguez: Aeros pitchers largely impressed in 2013, though more consistency is still needed. Tony Lastoria discusses the situation of the AA hurlers and what is in store to better improve the consistency of the staff moving forward.
Coach's Corner '13: Ruben Niebla Part 1: In an exclusive interview with Tribe minor league pitching coordinator Ruben Niebla, Tony Lastoria discusses the progress and regression of various pitching prospects and who can have the most immediate impact at the major league level in the future.
Coach's Corner '13: Ruben Niebla Part 2: In the second installment of this two-part interview, Tony Lastoria discusses the lower-level pitching prospects, including those added in the 2013 draft with Indians minor league pitching coordinator Ruben Niebla.
Around The Farm: November 23, 2013: Ryan Battaglia had a solid performance at the plate on Saturday as he reached base three times in Australian League baseball. Meanwhile, Carlos Moncrief extended his hit streak to three and Roberto Perez went another game without a hit. Jake Dungan reports on the action.
MLB News and Rumors: Indians lose Smith to the Angels: In this edition of the daily IBI Hot Stove report, Andy Nichols discusses former Indians setup man Joe Smith signing a three-year deal with the Angels as well as the Yankees agreeing to a deal with Brian McCann and the Cardinals being in talks with Jhonny Peralta.
Tribe Happenings: Roster review, Murphy thoughts & Smith bolts: In his weekly notebook, Tony Lastoria gives his thoughts on the Tribe's recent roster decisions as well as the loss of Joe Smith to Los Angeles and the addition ofDavid Murphy.
IBI Power Poll: Who will be the Indians next closer?: Is it a player on the current roster, or will the Indians sign someone else? Jim Pete throws this question out to the fans as the Indians begin their search for a new closer following the departures of Chris Perez and Joe Smith.
Around The Farm: November 24. 2013: Erik Gonzalez continued his strong Winter Ball performance with another multi-hit game. In Puerto Rico, Bryce Stowell was handed his second blown save of the offseason campaign as he allowed two runs in only a third of an inning. Arthur Kinney recaps the highlights.
MLB News and Rumors: Haren heads back to the West Coast: It was a bit of a slow news day as Dan Harensigning a one-year deal with the Dodgers was the only major story. Also, the deal between St. Louis and Jhonny Peralta became official at $53 million over four years. Andy Nichols has his daily Hot Stove report.
Tribe Madness: Dunn Field Region Round 2 results: Round two continues as Cliff Lee, Bob Feller and Tris Speaker emerged victorious in the Dunn Field Region matchups to complete the West Region matchups for this round. Rick Lamborn has all the latest Tribe Madness news and highlights.
Around the Farm: November 25, 2013: Carlos Moncrief appears to be showing signs of fatigue as his plate discipline has regressed significantly over the course of his Puerto Rico Winter League campaign. In other news,Jose Ramirez and Jesus Aguilar sat out because of injury. Michael Hattery reports.
MLB News and Rumors: Wilson nearing deal with Detroit?: Only minor moves and rumors made up Tuesday's IBI Hot Stove report as the top stories included the Tigers closing in on a deal with free agent reliever/closer Brian Wilson. Andy Nichols has all the latest news and notes.
Murphy deal official, veteran looks to bounce back in Cleveland: Excited to sign with Indians, Murphy hopes for a better 2014. As the Indians added the veteran outfielder in hopes of solving their right field problems. The question is can he rebound from a poor performance in 2013? Jim Berdysz speculates.
Swinging for the Fences: David Murphy and lineup balance: How does the addition of Murphy help balance the Tribe offense? Jake Dungan looks at how the veteran outfielder compares to the other hitters in the Indians lineup and how his contrast can be productive for the team.
Around the Farm: November 26, 2013: After sitting out for five days due to a hamstring injury, Jesus Aguilar returned with a vengeance in Venezuela as he hit a home run, walked twice and scored two runs in his first game back in action. Arthur Kinney has all that and more.
MLB News and Rumors: Cano, Yankees still far apart: As the Robinson Cano saga drags on, rumor has it he and the Yankees are still nowhere close to reaching an agreement on a contract extension. Andy Nichols has the latest on the all-star second baseman as well as other Hot Stove rumblings.
Giving thanks at the Corner of Carnegie and Ontario: With Thanksgiving just a day away, Jim Pete takes the opportunity to give thanks for all the excitement the Indians provided this season as well as all the talented writers and loyal readers at IBI.
Around the Farm: November 27, 2013: Erik Gonzalez may be starting to come back to earth as he only recoreded one hit in two at-bats and struck out twice. Elsewhere on the winter ball circuit, Brett Brach struggled to keep hitters off the base paths in his appearance on Wednesday even though he managed to limit the damage. Michael Goodman reports.
A quick note of thanks on Thanksgiving: As Thanksgiving is now upon us, Tony Lastoria takes the time to thank the IBI staff and readers for another great year of covering Indians major and minor league baseball.
Tribe Madness: Quicken Loans Region Round 2 results: Tribe Madness rolls on as second round of East Bracket matchups begin. Who will be going home and who will advance further toward the prize? Rick Lamborn has the results and highlights from this round's Quicken Loans Region matchups.
Around the Farm: November 28, 2013: Elvis Araujo had a strong outing in just his second start of the winter ball campaign. As he's now gotten the opportunity to stretch out his innings as a starter, he has responded well posting 1.50 ERA in those appearances. Tony Lastoria recaps that and all the day's winter ball action.
Tribe Madness: First Energy Region Round 2 results: Albert Belle, Tito Francona and Al Rosen were among the Tribe players going head-to-head in round two of the First Energy Region matchups. Get the latest Tribe Madness news and highlights from Rick Lamborn.
Around the Farm: November 29, 2013: Carlos Moncrief had a good night at the plate as he recorded two hits and an RBI. Here's hoping it's the start of him breaking out of his recent slump. Also, Jesus Aguilar continues to show signs of breaking out of his own slump with a two-hit performance. Arthur Kinney recaps all the day's winter ball action.
MLB News and Rumors: Vogelsong re-ups with Giants: Veteran right-hander Ryan Vogelsong agreed to a one-year extension with the Giants for $5 million plus incentives. Also, there's the possibilty of a reunion between free agent reliever Edward Mujica and the Tribe. Andy Nichols reports all the latest news and rumors.
Tribe Madness: Progressive Field Region Round 2 results: The Tribe Madness tournament continues with the next set of regional matchups as round two rolls on. Joe Jackson and Sam McDowell were among the winners of these matchups. Join Rick Lamborn for the latest news and results.
Friends of the Feather
David Murphy will try to find old swing with Cleveland Indians: David Murphy recounts the decision to sign with the Tribe, including how his five-year-old daughter broke the news about his decision. Murphy hopes to find his swing again in Cleveland after a poor performance in 2013. Paul Hoynes of the Plain Dealer reports.
Masterson helps 'Feed Their Future' surpass goal: Indians ace travels to African slum as part of charitable organization. Jordan Bastian of MLB.com discusses Masterson's trip as well as the accomplishments of his charity while in Africa.
Other Former Indians Should Join Vizquel, Alomar in Coaching Ranks: As Omar Vizquel joined the Tigers organization as their first base/infield coach, he becomes the latest former Indians player to become a coach. Craig Gifford of DidTheTribeWinLastNight.com lists the former Tribe players who are now coaches as well as looks at which players could become coaches in the future.
Jake Dungan is a communications student at Stark State College and an intern with the Akron RubberDucks. Follow him on Twitter @MajorLeagueJake.