This is a fantastic time in the baseball seasons where beat writers present that fascinating question for the on-the-fence, soon-to-be free agents, such as “would you be willing to come back next season?” and “how do you like playing in Cleveland?” However, any person with a brain knows that the answer isn’t going to be “I’m out of here quicker than LeBron” or “until that smell is gone, I have no interest in being in Cleveland”. Baseball players are just businessmen with a unique skill-set, and the sooner they announce to the world that they aren’t happy playing for 1/30th of a league, the sooner they know that they could have just cost themselves thousands or millions of dollars.
So, when ESPN.com reported (via the Cleveland Plain Dealer) that Ubaldo Jimenez and Scott Kazmir would welcome an opportunity to make millions of dollars pitching in Cleveland, the responses were quick:
Jimenez said: “We haven’t talked, but of course I would listen to them. They have treated me really good here. It feels like home.”
Kazmir countered with: “I would love to stay here. I’m very interested … I’d love to contribute and continue to be with this group.”
These bold statements do nothing more than to stir the pot in the social network of the Cleveland Indians’ fan base. The responses were expected, ranging from trolling ESPN for writing the short article, to mocking the abilities of the aforementioned players, to thinking that life without these two pitchers would lead to hysterical crying and a weakness resulting in the consumption of massive quantities of ice cream.
When you get down to it, though, are there any players that you could live without on the 2013 Cleveland Indians roster?
You could assume that the 25-man roster, now expanded, was full of valuable players who couldn’t go elsewhere without a heroes sendoff. But…what if you could just have it your way and get rid of some of those players forever – be it for contract freedom, the need or want of a superior player, or because you just don’t like the guy – I’m looking at you Chris Perez!
The next few weeks will have two possible outcomes:
1) The Indians make the playoffs.
2) The Indians make excuses for not making the playoffs.
With the second one, all of the “great chemistry”, “played with fire and passion”, and the ol’ manager and fearless leader saying “I couldn’t be more proud of a group of men” and “this is the best team that I have ever managed” quotes will arise, but the fans of the Cleveland Indians are probably tired of those types of quotes, and they are ready for results. This is where you can make your case, fighting for the players that you want to build around, while casting off the scrubs that will factor into the demise of your beloved Tribe.
Below is a survey that will allow you to pick as many players as you’d like from the club’s current roster. The players that make the cut will be revealed next week. If you would like to vent about the players that you despise or the players that you have made a cardboard cutout to cuddle with, feel free to go crazy in the comment section of the survey or in the comments of this article.
Have fun. This is where you get to be the GM.