Found February 07, 2012 on Waiting For Next Year:

While We’re Waiting serves as the early morning gathering of WFNY-esque information for your viewing pleasure. Have something you think we should see? Send it to our tips email at tips@waitingfornextyear.com.

Five prospects with the most to prove this year- “Unfortunately for Phelps and Tribe fans, his brief, 35 game major league stint was a disaster. Phelps had terrible offensive stats (.155/.241/.254 slash line, .494 OPS (39 OPS+), .231 wOBA (39 wRC+), -0.9 fWAR in 80 PA) and struggled defensively (five errors in only 75 chances). Phelps ended up back in AAA while Kipnis solidified his hold on the second base job later in the season.

While Phelps won’t be able to prove himself at the major league level this year, he will need to impress as the everyday second baseman in Columbus in order to rebuild his stock. If he keeps producing at a high level in AAA, he’ll get another shot in the majors. With the lack of middle-infield talent the Indians have in the higher levels of the minors, one injury will give Phelps his chance to prove himself again. He’ll need to work hard this year to be prepared for that moment, whenever it comes.” [Paiscik/Indians Prospect Insider]

More praise for Kyrie- “What makes the beginning of this Kyrie era so exciting, at least to me, is the fact that this kid knows he’s loved, and wants to deliver on that investment. Plainly, he wants the ball. Always. As a fan, this can sometimes be worrisome. I mean, we had the best player on the planet, and I never felt 100% comfortable with Lebron controlling the rock and the game on the line. But with Kyrie, it feels different. I get the feeling he cares a little more, and that he has the confidence and the where with all to make this work.

Early in the season, with the Cavs facing the very good Indiana Pacers, Kyrie drove to the rim as time expired to win it for the Cavs. It didn’t go in, and the Cavs went on to lose. But, with that loss came a shining positive – our guy lived for the big moment. Fast forward a month and a half, and we’ve seen Kyrie make that game winning drive to the hoop, and in even more spectacular fashion than we could’ve initially imagined. Yes, I know, it’s early – his career is young – but I refuse to believe that all of his late-game heroics and last second winning isn’t meaningful. It just doesn’t seem possible that, after this many games played, we’re witnessing an anomaly.” [Factor/Cavs the Blog]

“For all of Tressel’s triumphs, his largest failure – outside of his aversion to acquiesce with petty yet devastating compliance issues – was keeping the company of his cronies. Bollman did everything but steal from Ohio State, commanding the team’s biggest liability throughout the decade without the risk of termination. He had no pressure to perform, and that entitlement was passed down to the sprinkling of linemen he brought in. There is a reason the Buckeyes had so many three and four-year starters during his tenure: Necessity. Lack of competition and depth have a negative impact on options.

Contrast Tressel’s cronyism with Meyer’s edict to his coaches that they would have no value to Ohio State unless they could recruit and you have a terrifying new reality for the Big Ten that is much bigger than Dodson ever will be: The Buckeyes were a colossal pain in the ass over the past decade, at partial strength. That was good enough to win the conference, which is no longer the trophy for Meyer’s Buckeyes.” [Ramzy/Eleven Warriors]

But those bats aren’t that good against LHP- “What I didn’t delve into was what the Indians’ lineup might look like against left-handed pitching. The way I see it, Cleveland could go with 5L/4R, 4L/4R or even 3L/6R depending on manager Manny Acta’s mood.

Santana and shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera will hit right-handed against lefties, so there are two. Right-handed-hitting Lou Marson would start behind the plate on days Santana is at first base, so there’s another.

Then, Acta could spell an outfielder (Brantley or Sizemore) with a righty like Shelley Duncan, Aaron Cunningham, Russ Canzler or even Jason Donald, depending on who makes the team off the bench. Acta could also spell Hafner similarly at DH, or give a day off here and there to Kipnis at second base, or Chisenhall/Jack Hannahan at third base). [Bastian/MLB.com]

Finally, a nice graphic on the Indians’ window to win. [Beyond the Box Score]

Double bonus non-sports related link: Chris Jones of Esquire on the Zanesville animal escape. Warning- this is long, and detailed and VERY well written.

THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Five Prospects With The Most To Prove in 2012

Cord Phelps (Photo: IPI)Being in the minor leagues is all about proving yourself, but for these five players, 2012 will be even more critical on their quest to proving that they belong in the Cleveland Indians' long-term plans.Two weeks ago, I listed the five most exciting prospects for 2012.Continuing on with this theme, now I'll take a look at the five Tribe prospects with...

Don't be so weary of the Indians' lefty-laden lineup

Kotchman not the right-handed option many were hoping for (photo: MLB)The talk of the Cleveland offseason, long before, really, has been a lack of right-handed hitters in the Indians' lineup in general, but especially a lack of power from the right side.It is no secret that exactly zero of the team's projected regular position players are strictly right-handed, as only switch...

Keith Law Ranks Indians’ Farm System 29th in MLB

With trades surrounding prospects Alex White and Drew Pomeranz coupled with the promotions of key players like Carlos Santana, Lonnie Chisenhall and Jason Kipnis, the Cleveland Indians’ farm system has been “gutted,” per ESPN’s Keith Law, who ranks the Tribe’s developmental system 29th in all of Major League Baseball. Entering what many believe to be their contention window...

Tribe Offseason Review and What Happens After 2013?

We are so close to pitchers and catchers reporting to Arizona, that baseball starved fans like me can taste it. Football season officially ended Sunday with the New York Giants holding the Lombardi Trophy for the second time in four years. While I am a hardcore college basketball junkie (which in this town is like being a leper), I always have one eye looking towards my first love...

Ubaldo Jimenez could be difference-maker for Indians this season

(source feed provided no summary content for this entry)

All-Time Indians: Rocky Colavito

Name: Rocco Dominico Colavito Position: Right Field Nick Name: Rocky Number: 38 Tribe Time: 1955-1959, 1965-1967 DOB: 08/10/1933 Accolades: 3 Time All-Star (1959,1965-1966), Top 5 MVP (1958-1959, 1965) Stats G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB BB SO SB CS SB% OBP SLG AVG OPS ISOP ...

All-Time Indians: Ray Chapman

Name: Raymond Johnson Chapman Position: Short Stop Tribe Time: 1912-1920 DOB: 01/15/1891 Stats G AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI TB BB SO SB OBP SLG AVG OPS ISOP Best Season (1917) 156 563 98 170 28 13 2 36 230 61 65 52 .370 .409 .302 .779 .107 Career 1051 3785 671 1053 162 81 17 364 1428 452 414 233...

Terry Pluto talks Indians, Kyrie Irving, Browns' draft - Podcast

Joshua Gunter/The Plain DealerKyrie Irving was a big topic of discussion on this week's chat with Terry Pluto.Audio: Terry Pluto podcast Plain Dealer columnist Terry Pluto talks Cleveland sports. What should the Indians do with Matt LaPorta? Do the Browns...

Inbox: How will Acta handle the lineup?

Beat writer Jordan Bastian answers questions about the Indians' lineup, what to expect from Casey Kotchman and the future of Fausto Carmona in his latest Inbox.
MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.