We all know that Cleveland is on #LeBronWatch2014 in hopes of a reunion between LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. It’s an exciting time to be in the Cleveland area – Kyrie Irving just inked a max-contract deal to stay on the shores of Lake Erie, the Browns drafted Johnny Manziel and are getting all kinds of updates with pictures of his frolicking with gorgeous women from TMZ, and the Indians are hovering in contention…
Or are they?
After splitting the series with the New York Yankees with a win on Thursday night at Progressive Field, the Indians are now 45-46, 7.5 games out in the AL Central thanks to the Detroit Tigers big win over the Kansas City Royals, and Cleveland maintained for another day. The Indians were 4.5 games behind the Seattle Mariners (entering play on Thursday) for the second Wild Card.
With a little less than three weeks until the trade deadline, should the Indians load up and make a run, or are they one of the clubs that can help load up other teams around the league?
With so many injuries around the league, specifically to Brandon Phillips in Cincinnati and now Masahiro Tanaka in New York, the likes of Asdrubal Cabrera and Justin Masterson could be quite valuable for some teams, even in what could be called “down seasons”. If the confidence isn’t there to win the division, is it worth reaching a one-game playoff to determine the Indians’ postseason once again? Kenny Lofton may have had a point when saying that losing in the Wild Card game wasn’t the playoffs, as the revenue that comes in from sellouts in a postseason series is quite different than a single game. At the end of the season, are the Indians better off with Masterson or Cabrera leaving via free agency or accepting a qualifying offer that the club may not even want them to accept, or would they be better off with a prospect or two, no matter how mediocre, acquired by trading off assets and soon-to-be free agents?
However, adding an arm like Jorge De La Rosa of the Rockies, John Lackey of the Red Sox, or Trevor Cahill of the Diamondbacks (rotting away in Triple-A after some ineffective starts at the beginning of the season), although not elite, could be enough to help the Indians get over the hump with their starting pitching. After all, the offense scores runs, the bullpen is outstanding, and just fixing the rotation could make the Indians contenders, right?
The Indians could do a three different things the rest of the way:
1) Stand pat with the club that they have and hope for continued production from those thriving and increased production from those who haven’t succeeded this season. This also has the risk of continued failure by those struggling, which would lead to an early fall out of contention.
2) Trade for additional talent to load up the roster for a postseason run, dealing prospects and pieces of the future to win today.
3) Trade away talent from the current 25-man roster and acquire more pieces to contend over the next several years, gaining team-controlled talent and dealing away the remainder of pricey contracts for younger, affordable players.
So, as fans, what would you like to see the Indians do with the trade deadline looming?
What would you like to see the Indians do with the trade deadline looming?
- Trade existing talent for younger, affordable, controllable players (61%, 11 Votes)
- Stand pat and get continued production from the current group (22%, 4 Votes)
- Acquire talent by dealing away prospects to win now (17%, 3 Votes)
Total Voters: 18