The All-Star Break is a time to reflect on the first half of the season and look ahead to the three months of baseball that still remain. In that spirit, 17 Indians writers representing seven different sites took the time to offer their thoughts on the state of the Tribe, the ups and downs of the first half, and what’s still to come in the second.
Among the subjects we discussed was how the last few months have changed our minds about some individuals in or aspects of the Indians organization not necessarily related to in-game performances. Here are the results, starting with the most basic topic: the overall direction of the team.
Looks like things are moving in the right direction, as eight of the 11 respondents who said they’ve changed their minds are for the better. Interestingly, no one said they’d been moved too far one way or the other.
How about the man at the helm, Manny Acta?
This one takes a turn for the worse. Seven of the 11 voters who’ve reconsidered their opinions of Acta did so for the worse, including two “Much worse” rankings without any corresponding positives. It’s an interesting shift after he seemed to be very well regarded last year.
What about the men behind the curtain in the front office?
The spread here is similar in proportion to Acta’s but smaller in scale. Five of eight mind-changers have been disappointed by Chris Antonetti & Co. this year, but a majority of our voters said their thinking has stayed the same.
Speaking of the front office, how about the team’s outreach to fans?
The Indians have made a real effort to accommodate their fans this summer, and despite the low attendance figures we seem to think it’s working. Of the respondents who noticed a difference, reactions were unanimously positive—a pretty big vote of confidence from a seemingly skeptical group.
Of course, we can’t talk about the fans without mentioning Chris Perez:
Talk about a polarizing figure. Only three of our voters stayed neutral while seven said they’d drastically changed their opinions of him. Overall we seem to like his outspokenness, but we also have a significant minority that thinks otherwise.
Finally, we look to the future: what has the first half of 2012 told us about 2013?
Not much, I guess. Fewer people changed their minds on this than any other category, though what little difference there has been is positive as only one voter feels less confident about next year than he did three months ago.