Yesterday, we sent 2012 off on a positive note with a list of the best Indians moments of the year. Today, we take a different tack—the airing of grievances. So in this special edition of the Weekly Wroundtable, we asked our large group of panelists: What was the worst Indians moment of 2012?
Merritt Rohlfing (Wahoo’s on First): The month of August. It happened so fast, it was like a moment, and at the same time an interminable misery. It just wouldn’t end.
Brian Heise (Wahoo’s on First): May 26th versus the White Sox. Jose Lopez batted cleanup for what would be the first of many times until he was DFA’d. It was also the beginning of the slow and painful end of the 2012 season, only we didn’t know it at the time.
Vince Guerrieri (Did the Tribe Win Last Night?): The month that followed the comeback win against Justin Verlander. You have to go back almost 100 years to find a month that bad in Tribe history. It made people realize that the Indians not only weren’t as good as everyone thought, but they were worse than everyone feared.
Craig Lyndall (WaitingForNextYear): The losing streak. I know that is a collection of moments, but looking back on it as an entire season, I think we can still call it the worst moment.
Lewie Pollis (Wahoo’s on First): On May 5, citing Adrian Beltre‘s 0-for-5 career line against Joe Smith, Manny Acta instructed Smith to intentionally walk Mitch Moreland to bring up Beltre with two on and two outs and the game tied in the 10th inning. There are all kinds of reasons why this was a bad idea, and my jaw almost dropped to the floor as I watched it happen. There seemed to be some poetic justice when Beltre predictably connected for a three-run game-winning homer, and the feeling that my favorite team deserved to get beaten is one I never want to feel again.
David Roberts (Did the Tribe Win Last Night?): When the Indians lost 11 in a row.
Jeff Mount (Wahoo’s on First): Signing Johnny Damon. If Damon had said no I believe their next move would have been to contact Jose Canseco. The Indians went into last season hoping that Grady Sizemore and Travis Hafner would stay healthy enough to get 500 at-bats each, that Casey Kotchman would match the one year of decent production in his career rather than the six years of mediocrity, and that Shelley Duncan would show a level of consistency which he had been lacking for ten years. Signing Damon was a public admission that none of those things had worked out, which should have surprised nobody, and that we had no backup plan. Why we didn’t just give Canzler and LaPorta 500 at-bats at that point to see if something clicked is beyond me. How could it have been worse?
TD (WaitingForNextYear): Sitting on an eight-game losing streak, The Tribe scores three runs in the 10th. Chris Perez gives up 5, including a walkoff two-run jack to Miguel Cabrera. Easily the low point of the season.
Nino Colla (The Tribe Daily): Watching Grady Sizemore break down yet again. The more and more I think about it, the more I think what could have been. He is an absolute slam dunk of an All-World talent, someone who had the potential to put up numbers that could get him into the Hall of Fame if he played long enough. His skill, his work ethic, he was a superstar in the making. And it has all gone down hill and it was this moment that I think we all realized it. It’s sad and unfortunate because this is the year it kind of was made apparent that he not ever getting back to what he used to be and, he really could have helped this 2012 team if he did.
Evan Vogel (Wahoo’s on First): April 17: The day that they signed Johnny Damon.
Ronnie Tellalian (Did the Tribe Win Last Night?): The entire month of August was the worst part of 2012.
Steve Kinsella (Wahoo’s on First): The 11-game losing streak following that great victory against the Tigers. Completely sucked the wind out of the entire city.
Katrina Putnam (Wahoo’s on First): The worst moment of the season wasn’t in the midst of the team’s horrible August—it happened in June, at Yankee Stadium, when Dewayne Wise pretended to catch a foul ball hit by Jack Hannahan, and Hannanah was ejected for arguing with the umpire over the call. Manny Acta never stood up for his player, never expressed any anger—and even defended the umpire later. If there was ever a time for him to react, it was then. His inaction during this game was a perfect example of the attitude present throughout the year. If watching Hannahan fight his battle alone was demoralizing for me, I can’t imagine how the team felt.