Weekend Update: Super Bowl Edition
- As mentioned last throughout the week, the 2009 Cleveland Indians Top 100 Prospects & More book is now available! I got my first shipment in the mail during yet another blizzard here in northeast Ohio on Friday afternoon and sent out the round of shipments at the post office on Saturday. I will have the rest of the current prepaid orders in the mail on Monday or Tuesday at the latest. Everyone that had their book shipped in the Saturday shipment have already been contacted via email to let them know the book is on its way.
Again, the cost of the book INCLUDING shipping and handling is $17.95, and each additional book in the same order is $14.95. The book is 158 pages in length, and is really a hardcopy version of this site as almost all the information housed here is in the book for easy reference when you are away from a computer. Things like the 2008 Depth Chart (updating here on the site this week), 2009-2012 Rule 5 Draft Eligibles, 2008 Draft Recap, Affiliate info, coaching staffs, player development roster, 2009 schedules, 2008 transactions, and more. And of course all the scouting reports for the Top 100 posted on this site, as well as an additional 27 players not listed on this site.
I look forward to feedback from the people who get the first shipment. Anyone interested in picking up a copy, feel free to use the form on the right to order it via PayPal. Or, if you would like to send money via US Mail please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
This past Thursday we had catcher/outfielder Matt McBride on our weekly Smoke Signals program for about 20 minutes. Matt is a shy guy by nature, but was a great guest on the show. He actually provided some interesting news in that he in fact is being moved out from behind the plate and to the outfield in a full time capacity. We knew he was playing outfield in the fall Instructional League and in the Hawaii Winter League, but were not sure what that meant for 2009....now we know. Yes, he will still catch bullpens to stay fresh at catcher, but the primary focus for him in spring training this season will be a permanent conversion to the outfield.
So why the change? Granted the Indians are top heavy with outfielders in Triple-A Columbus, they are also extremely top heavy in catchers from the big league team with Victor/Shoppach to Triple-A Columbus with Toregas/Gimenez and to Double-A Akron with Santana. This left very little room for McBride. He'll surely keep up on the catching, but there is a big dropoff in the outfield after Triple-A, and if McBride does not start the season in the Akron outfield, he'll be there very quickly this year. In addition to the need in the outfield, it is also to save his shoulder which he has had problems with since he was drafted, and even though he had surgery on his labrum last offseason they feel it is better for his long term future to get him out from behind the plate and to the outfield where there is a lot less wear and tear on the arm.
This coming Thursday February 5th we'll have right-handed closer Vinnie Pestano on, and in future weeks right-handed pitcher Josh Tomlin (Feb 12th) and outfielder Nick Weglarz (Feb 19th).
Right-hander Randy Newsom penned a very nice piece on his blog a few days ago. He talks about life as a minor leaguer where it often can be tough to see people you have become good friends with leave the organization, be it by choice or not. Some really good insight into the relationships these guys all have with one another and how you really have to like your teammates since you are with them literally 24/7 for six months.
Former Indians farmhand RHP Dan Denham has signed a minor league deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Speaking of Denham, his younger brother Jason who is still in the Indians system is coming back from a nasty hand injury he suffered late last year. While I won't provide the details of what occurred, he should be in camp when spring training starts.
The minor league reporting date is what I believe to be March 5th from what I have been told, with some players attending a pre-camp reporting date of February 25th.