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Unread postby Steve Buffum » Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:03 pm

gte619n wrote:Not only has Betancourt already proved he can't close, he can't be used on multiple days:

2004, 2005 and 2006:
1 Days Rest: 3.22 era, 67ip, .217 BAA
0 Days Rest: 4.88 ear, 27.2ip, .342 BAA

(Again, nobody appears to have told Wedge this)

What are this year's statistics?
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Unread postby pup » Thu Jun 21, 2007 12:50 pm

Mujica has shown no ability to actually get MLB hitters out, yet. I like his peripherals, so I think he'll be great, but that's an awfully big question to have to answer at the beginning on 2007 when you had the worst bullpen in the history of baseball in 2006.


But that is Shapiro's job. To determine when this guy is ready. He chose to sign Hernandez and remove this option. Now he is paying $3.5M finding out how wrong he was.

But then you've still only got one lefty. I suppose you CAN have a bullpen with one lefty, but we quickly figured out this season that two is much better.


Sure, two are better. But we came this far with one and that is what is being discussed. Quickly? We are almost halfway through the season and Perez has ZERO meaningful innings.

Would Carlos Lee be 10% better than our right field platoon, including defense? Maybe, but not necessarily, given league and park factors.


10% better than Trot Nixon and David Delucci, are you serious? I can't even fathom the idea that they are within 25% of Carlos Lee.

Plus, we haven't even accounted for the EIGHTEEN MILLION DOLLARS.


David Delucci+Trot Nixon+Roberto Hernandez+Aaron Fultz+Kieth Foulke+Joe Borowski= 3M+4M+3.5M+1.5M+5M+4M=21M

I think that accounts for it just fine.

Mujica goes down when Westbrook is recalled. I don't think we need 13 pitchers.


I think Mastny is going down and Mujica is here to stay.
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Unread postby VultureHxC » Thu Jun 21, 2007 1:09 pm

the bargain basement guys people keep refering to that did well (millwood, howry, juan the first time) were all injury risks. millwood was coming back and people were worried about him, howry spent a year rehabbing in the minors, and juan still cost us $10 million for one year. i'm all for smart shopping and being timid when you have a rebuilding team. but now, we aren't rebuilding, we're contending. it'd be nice to spend some money on players to show fans you're committed to winning and not spending it on a 42 year old reliever, a lefty that wasn't even considered an effective lefty when we signed him, a right fielder with a back problem (who was REPLACED by his lifelong team for......a right fielder with injury problems), and a lefty journey man that can only hit righties (supposedly) to a multi year deal when we have 3 outfielders at AAA that are waiting for MLB experience. and they wonder why we have one of the worst attendence records in baseball
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Unread postby Duane Kuiper » Thu Jun 21, 2007 4:23 pm

Shapiro has already been quoted as saying the Mujica is going to the minors on Sunday when Westbrook is activated.
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Unread postby pup » Thu Jun 21, 2007 4:31 pm

Shapiro has already been quoted as saying the Mujica is going to the minors on Sunday when Westbrook is activated.


Yeah, I just heard that myself. Still, the guy that is staying is not someone they signed this offseason and is an in-house guy. So replace Mujica's name with Mastny's in earlier posts and it is the same argument.
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Unread postby consigliere » Thu Jun 21, 2007 11:41 pm

Pup wrote:I would not have signed any of this season's free agent class (including Borowski).

No Borowski.
No Foulke.
No Hernandez.
No Delucci.
No Fultz.
No Nixon.

I would have spent every available penny on Carlos Lee and went with Mujica, Perez and Ferd Cabrera in the pen.


THis team would be up more of a creek with Carlos Lee here and a backend of Mujica, Cabrera, Perez and Betancourt than it would be as constructed now.

Absolutely no way they could have gone into this season without an established closer, especially after what we saw last year. Yes, Borowski has been Wickman-esque, but he is saving over 90% of his games. I'll take that. Borowski is one of the main reasons this team is having a bounce back season.
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Unread postby Mr. MacPhisto » Thu Jun 21, 2007 11:46 pm

I could do without every one but Borowski. He's gotten the job done.

I'm still not a big Carlos Lee fan. He's a butcher in the OF and his salary is reasonable for the present but when it balloons to $18.5M+ it will severely hurt the overall roster.
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Unread postby pup » Fri Jun 22, 2007 6:31 am

I said I was wrong with Borowski, he has done an efficient job to this point.

To rule out the fact that none of our in house guys could have gotten the job done is impossible. Just like I can't say they would have gotten the job done.

There is no way Carlos Lee does less for this team than:
Trot Nixon
David Delucci
Aaron Fultz
Roberto Hernandez
Kieth Foulke
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Unread postby consigliere » Fri Jun 22, 2007 7:59 am

Pup wrote:To rule out the fact that none of our in house guys could have gotten the job done is impossible. Just like I can't say they would have gotten the job done.


I'll copy and paste over the response from googleeph2 in the other thread, which was spot on and addresses this point:

googleeph2 wrote:With the 1yr contracts, it seemed obvious to me that they didn't expect the vets to come in and be "the answer." Rather, they were placeholders in specific roles, to be replaced for ineffectiveness or injury by cherry-picked kids who appear ready for a callup at particular points in the season.

Dolan may eat some contracts, if guys like Hernandez cannot be dealt.
To me, they're acting like a playoff contender instead of completely relying on the small-market, we-live-and-die-with-the-kids approach.

Now, losing the high draft pick- I see your point. And I don't have a problem with the opposition to the number of older position players. But the OFs shouldn't be lumped with the relief pitchers, imo- the Tribe seems to be putting the young relievers in positions where they are most likely to succeed, rather than throwing them all out there to sink or swim together on a playoff contender.
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Unread postby Prosecutor » Fri Jun 22, 2007 10:36 am

I can understand why Shapiro didn't want to start the season with a LF platoon of Michaels and Francisco, and a RF platoon of Blake and Gutierrez. Francisco and Gutierrez both hit .278 at AAA last year with minimal power.

The alternative was to bring in Delucci and Nixon and keep your options open. If Dellucci hits .290 against righties, great. If Nixon fully recovers from surgery and gets back to his old form, like Millwood and Howry did, great. If either or both can't get the job done, you can always release them and bring up whoever is kicking butt in AAA. The only issue is wasting some money if the vets don't perform, which is between you and the owner.

Same with the bullpen. Shap didn't want to start the season counting on Mujica, Perez, and Cabrera. So he rolled the dice on Foulke, Fultz, Borowski, and Hernandez, figuring he might get two hits and two misses. The misses get replaced in-season with whoever emerges at AAA, in this case Perez and hopefully, Matt Miller pretty soon.

I think that's a pretty good plan, and it might work out. Foulke and Hernandez were busts, although Foulke didn't cost anything. Boro and Fultz are working out fine. Dellucci and Nixon appear to be busts, but they've bought some time for Francisco and Gutierrez to emerge as .300+ hitters at Buffalo and now they can be brought up in mid-season when they're hitting well and have the best chance to succeed.

The alternative would be to roll the dice on one player like Carlos Lee, but that's a hell of a gamble that this franchise probably can't afford to make.
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Unread postby paulcousineau » Fri Jun 22, 2007 11:43 am

Prosecutor wrote:I can understand why Shapiro didn't want to start the season with a LF platoon of Michaels and Francisco, and a RF platoon of Blake and Gutierrez. Francisco and Gutierrez both hit .278 at AAA last year with minimal power.

The alternative was to bring in Delucci and Nixon and keep your options open. If Dellucci hits .290 against righties, great. If Nixon fully recovers from surgery and gets back to his old form, like Millwood and Howry did, great. If either or both can't get the job done, you can always release them and bring up whoever is kicking butt in AAA. The only issue is wasting some money if the vets don't perform, which is between you and the owner.

Same with the bullpen. Shap didn't want to start the season counting on Mujica, Perez, and Cabrera. So he rolled the dice on Foulke, Fultz, Borowski, and Hernandez, figuring he might get two hits and two misses. The misses get replaced in-season with whoever emerges at AAA, in this case Perez and hopefully, Matt Miller pretty soon.

I think that's a pretty good plan, and it might work out. Foulke and Hernandez were busts, although Foulke didn't cost anything. Boro and Fultz are working out fine. Dellucci and Nixon appear to be busts, but they've bought some time for Francisco and Gutierrez to emerge as .300+ hitters at Buffalo and now they can be brought up in mid-season when they're hitting well and have the best chance to succeed.

The alternative would be to roll the dice on one player like Carlos Lee, but that's a hell of a gamble that this franchise probably can't afford to make.


I think that this is extremely well put and goes right to the organizational philosophy of developing their own players. When a player is not quite ready (or not known to be ready) the team signs low-risk players in the hopes that they can serve as a stop-gap until the organization produces a viable option.

Nixon, Dellucci, Hernandez, Fultz, and Hernandez are all stop-gaps until this team can fully determine whether Choo, Gutz, Frisco, and the bevy of young relievers are viable options.

The only signing I really disliked was the Dellucci one due to the length of the deal. The rest of them didn't really commit much to those players in case any of them really blew up (as Hernandez did).

The stop-gaps were necessary though if you look at how young the team would have been at the beginning of the season (Garko, Barfield, Peralta, Marte, Choo, Gutierrez).

But to go out and pay for the biggest FA in the off-season is just something that you're never going to see from this team - and there's something to that.

How have the Astros and Cubs performed after making Lee and Soriano rich?
How about Jason Schmidt and Barry Zito?
Those are the big FA signings from the past off-season and as those players get older and the dollars get bigger, the contracts look worse and worse (see Millwood, Kevin).

As the season progresses we'll likely see more of these guys (the stop-gaps) move to the background as the youngsters will take a more active role. But to do that at the beginning of the season, without knowing how the youngsters would perform in 2007 could have put the Indians in a big hole to begin the season.

As it stands, they are not in that hole and have the flexibility to drop the dead weight and replace it with players who have proven themselves in the early season.
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Unread postby pup » Fri Jun 22, 2007 12:45 pm

You guys really make me laugh sometimes, so thank you for that.

The logic involved in saying you are better off paying 5 people $15 million to suck ass is better than paying one guy $16 million to not suck ass is ridiculous.

You want me to believe we were better off signing Roberto Hernandez to give us time to see if our own guys are ready? Do you buy a 94 Accord to give your 07 Porsche time to break in?

You want me to believe that having David Delucci and Trot Nixon to see if Franklin Gutierrez and Ben Fransisco are ready is better than having Carlos Lee?

If Rafeal Perez started the year in our bullpen instead of Aaron Fultz we would be a worse team?

The only argument anyone has is Joe Borowski. Outside of that, we spent more money in FA than we have in awhile and have nothing to show for it.

It is not Carlos Lee's fault Houston isn't winning. Take him off Houston and replace him with David Delucci, Trot Nixon, Aaron Fultz, Joe Borowski and Kieth Foulke and you really believe they would be better.
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Unread postby Prosecutor » Fri Jun 22, 2007 2:42 pm

The logic involved in saying you are better off paying 5 people $15 million to suck ass is better than paying one guy $16 million to not suck ass is ridiculous.

It's not that simple. The guy you give $16 million to might suck ass, too. The previous poster gave a number of examples of big dollar signings that flopped. Zito has a $126 million deal and he's 6-8 this year. There are no guarantees.

The Indians don't have the financial resources to take those kinds of risks. Carlos Lee missed over 150 games due to injury in 2005 and 2006. He's 31 years old and weighs 240 pounds. Could the Indians really afford to risk $16 million a year for several years on this player? We couldn't have just signed him to a one-year deal with the money we gave to Looch, Nixon, Hernandez et al. It was a long term, big money committment or nothing.

Also, by signing Lee to a long term deal the Tribe would be in no position to even compete for Hafner and Sabathia. Panning for gold was the only realistic option. They got Millwood and Howry doing that, and Borowski this year. I'm sure the Oriole fans weren't thrilled when they picked up Jeremy Guthrie last winter instead of signing a proven winner, but look at what they've got now. One of the best starters in the AL and he's making peanuts.

The only way the Indians can realistically get back to the WS is to cultivate the farm and get lucky panning for free agent gold.
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Unread postby paulcousineau » Fri Jun 22, 2007 2:44 pm

Pup wrote:You guys really make me laugh sometimes, so thank you for that.

The logic involved in saying you are better off paying 5 people $15 million to suck ass is better than paying one guy $16 million to not suck ass is ridiculous.

You want me to believe we were better off signing Roberto Hernandez to give us time to see if our own guys are ready? Do you buy a 94 Accord to give your 07 Porsche time to break in?

You want me to believe that having David Delucci and Trot Nixon to see if Franklin Gutierrez and Ben Fransisco are ready is better than having Carlos Lee?

If Rafeal Perez started the year in our bullpen instead of Aaron Fultz we would be a worse team?

The only argument anyone has is Joe Borowski. Outside of that, we spent more money in FA than we have in awhile and have nothing to show for it.

It is not Carlos Lee's fault Houston isn't winning. Take him off Houston and replace him with David Delucci, Trot Nixon, Aaron Fultz, Joe Borowski and Kieth Foulke and you really believe they would be better.


You're welcome for the laughter, thanks for the unending sarcasm and vitriol.

You're missing the point.
If you start the season with Perez in the bullpen or Gutierrez in the OF, and they crash and burn - then what do you do?

I'm pretty sure that the 2nd half of last year's bullpen showed what happens when the youngsters struggle. You sit there, with them trying to figure out what to do, without a Plan B available.

By getting those other guys, you don't rush your youngsters and allow them to develop at their own pace.

If a FA works out (like Borowski) - great.
If not, an alternative exists internally (ideally).

As for Carlos Lee, come talk to me in 2 years when Lee is incapable of playing the field, has a contract that is an albatross around the neck of the Astros and they trade him for pennies on the dollar.

It is his fault that they're not winning because a LF can only produce so much and, if their money is tied to him, it prevents the team from getting better in the overall sense, not just at one position.
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Unread postby pup » Fri Jun 22, 2007 3:45 pm

It's not that simple. The guy you give $16 million to might suck ass, too. The previous poster gave a number of examples of big dollar signings that flopped. Zito has a $126 million deal and he's 6-8 this year. There are no guarantees.



Mark Shapiro gets paid to make that decision. The only reason he does not is it takes away his excuse. If he goes out and pays someone big money and they flop, his ass is grass. Instead he goes out under the cover of budget and signs a bunch of crap.

The Indians don't have the financial resources to take those kinds of risks. Carlos Lee missed over 150 games due to injury in 2005 and 2006. He's 31 years old and weighs 240 pounds. Could the Indians really afford to risk $16 million a year for several years on this player?


If it imporves their chances of winning this year or next, yes they can. They are just unwilling to do so. We are all OK with giving Hafner the same contract, but he has the same injury concers (maybe worse) and can't play the field at all. Take 2009 out of the picture. Think 2007 and 2008. They don't look like they will keep Hafner anyway. They don't look like they are keeping C.C. anyway. So what exactly are we hoping for in 2009?

Also, by signing Lee to a long term deal the Tribe would be in no position to even compete for Hafner and Sabathia.


Is better to love and lost, then never loved at all. If we keep one of the two I will be shocked, so why not do everything to win before they leave?

They got Millwood and Howry doing that, and Borowski this year.


Three examples out of how many signed? Terrible. Fans accept this because they have no choice. In 3 years, you will all boo Hafner for taking more money to go to Anaheim, but you will support Shapiro for not giving him the extra dollar it would have taken to keep him.

I'm sure the Oriole fans weren't thrilled when they picked up Jeremy Guthrie last winter instead of signing a proven winner, but look at what they've got now. One of the best starters in the AL and he's making peanuts.


The Orioles took a flyer on someone and it paid off. Not even the same discussion as a team with visions of competing for the World Series.



The only way the Indians can realistically get back to the WS is to cultivate the farm and get lucky panning for free agent gold.


You are really OK with an organization saying the only way we can compete is through luck? That is unacceptable. They are competing ,right now, with the 28th payroll (guess, not looking it up you get the point). Make the payroll in the top 20 and we are as good as anyone out there. Add $15M to what is here right now and TRY TO WIN.

No, they do not have to. Why? Because everyone buys the crap Shapiro sells. He is protecting his own job, by not taking a chance and competing. How many times have we finished 2nd for a player? Coincidence? I don't think so.



You're missing the point.
If you start the season with Perez in the bullpen or Gutierrez in the OF, and they crash and burn - then what do you do?


I am not missing the point and I actually think you are now.

The point is this. Mark Shapiro has a job. It is to make the Indians as good as he can. If he has done his job in the past, then the guys in the minors should be good enough to play up here. If he has not, they are not. Either way, hiding their shortcomings for another half a season while we watch Oldberto proves nothing. Trust the guys you have developed, or stop selling people on the plan of building through the system. You can't do both.

I'm pretty sure that the 2nd half of last year's bullpen showed what happens when the youngsters struggle. You sit there, with them trying to figure out what to do, without a Plan B available.


At some point it becomes sink or swim. Let's find out if they sink before looking at other options. Just give it a shot. Again, what you are doing hasn't worked for 5 years.



It is his fault that they're not winning because a LF can only produce so much and, if their money is tied to him, it prevents the team from getting better in the overall sense, not just at one position.


ugh. The Atros are not losing because they signed Carlos Lee. He is not going to make a bad team great.

The Indians are not a bad team though. Adding a top flight right handed power hitter could put them over the top though. As a final piece ,Carlos Lee is excellent. As a building block, I agree I would look elsewhere. We have the blocks. We need a roof.

I really enjoy this discussion, but have grown tired of it. My departing words:

Go Indians. I love this team and the players they have. I just do not think the top of the organization is doing everything they can to help the players they have. Wether it is Shapiro's comitment to Wedge, or Wedge's commitment to veterans with little skill left or hatred of brash youth, or DIACF, or SIACF with no balls, they are not doing what is necesarry to win a World Series. I hope to God I am wrong.
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Unread postby consigliere » Sat Jun 23, 2007 8:16 am

Pup wrote:You guys really make me laugh sometimes, so thank you for that.

The logic involved in saying you are better off paying 5 people $15 million to suck ass is better than paying one guy $16 million to not suck ass is ridiculous.


No one said that.

What people are saying, is paying 5 guys $15M on a ONE YEAR commitment is better than paying one guy $15M on a SEVEN YEAR commitment.

If you could sign Carlos Lee for ONE year at $15M I am with you, in that heck yeah he is better. But, when you have three looming FAs like Westbrook, Hafner, and CC and the intentions are to sign them all if you can, how can this team ALSO go out and sign another player to a multi-year deal giving him $12M+ at 4-6 years per?

It just comes back to payroll felxibility. I am willing to accept it, and take these one year offers as stop gaps and insurance for the kids while we work through resiging the Big Three. And look, one of them signed a few months back. I want to go after and try to sign one or both of CC/Hafner BEFORE I go out and try to get a Carlos Lee or someone of that ilk who will make ridiculous money.
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Unread postby pup » Sat Jun 23, 2007 8:21 am

But, when you have three looming FAs like Westbrook, Hafner, and CC and the intentions are to sign them all if you can, how can this team ALSO go out and sign another player to a multi-year deal giving him $12M+ at 4-6 years per?


Then there shold be no excuse to not sign C.C.
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Unread postby consigliere » Sat Jun 23, 2007 8:32 am

Pup wrote:
But, when you have three looming FAs like Westbrook, Hafner, and CC and the intentions are to sign them all if you can, how can this team ALSO go out and sign another player to a multi-year deal giving him $12M+ at 4-6 years per?


Then there shold be no excuse to not sign C.C.


I wouldn't put it that way. The Indians have a year and a half window to resign him. If he hits FA, he is GONE. Like with Westbrook, we will have to resign him before he hits FA.

Gonna be a VERY interesting spring next year. Since the CC contract extension talks will start back up this offseason and most likely carry over into the spring and start of the season. I'll be surprised if they do not resign him OR trade him. I can't see them letting him leave in FA and only getting comp draft picks for him.
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Unread postby pup » Sat Jun 23, 2007 12:19 pm

You are playing both sides here.

Do the Indians know what it will take to sign CC?

Are they willing to give him that?

Once you answer those two questions, you can decide if that had any effect on a Carlos Lee type signing

If the reason they did not go after Lee was because they wanted the flexibility to keep CC and or Pronk, they have no excuse to not sign them.

If they do not sign them, then the only reason to not sign Lee is they are cheap. If they are not keeping CC, they have a 2 year window to win a title, and should have added every piece known to man to get that done.
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Unread postby consigliere » Sat Jun 23, 2007 1:27 pm

Not playing both sides here. Simply put, if Carlos Lee is here, he takes away from money needed to sign CC and/or Hafner.

Until I see these two contract situations resolve themselves, I just don't feel comfortable going out and signing a FA (i.e. Lee) to a $15M per contract for 4-6 years. I am MORE than fine going out and spending a lot of money on a player on a 1-2 year deal last offseason, for example Moises Alou and we almost signed him. And, this offseason, I will be MORE than happy to sign a FA or two to whatever they want in 2008.....but that is it. Only one year deals (unless the Hafner/Sabathia situation has been figured out).

I get the sense they do in fact want to resign both, whether or not it happens I have no idea. I have a good feeling we will resign one of them. As for CC's value, the org already has said they don't know his value, which is why they tabled contract discussions until the offseason for when his value is more established (and the market plays out).
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Unread postby pup » Sat Jun 23, 2007 5:26 pm

I have said it a thousand times. If we did not sign Carlos Lee because we ARE signing CC and Hafner, I am down with that.

If in 2 years we have 0 out of the 3, then nothing has changed and this team will never win with Mark Shapiro.

If we didn't sign Carlos Lee because we are willing to add that bat at the deadline, I am cool with that.

If we don't, then nothing has changed and this team will never win with Mark Shapiro.

As for CC's value, the org already has said they don't know his value, which is why they tabled contract discussions until the offseason for when his value is more established (and the market plays out).


18M, minimum. If you are not prepared to spend that, then you are not in the game for him. Isn't it someone's job to know this? Shouldn't you have a pretty good idea at this point? Assume his value at the highest you can imagine it being, if you are not willing to go there, you are not willing to go all out to sign him. If you are not willing to go all out and sign him, you should do whatever you can to win while you have him.

They tabled contract talk until the off season because they have no intetntions on keeping him. His agent walked in and said:

"Mark, we are loking for 6 years, $108M"

Shapiro said:

"Why don't we hold off on these talks until the off season, so we don't look bad telling you we are unwilling to go 6 years"
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Unread postby Tribefan24 » Sun Jun 24, 2007 1:59 pm

Trot nixon continues to be useless... why is this guy playing everyday ?


he is good for two double plays a game, yet we continue to play his worthless ass




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Unread postby leadpipe » Sun Jun 24, 2007 11:11 pm

To add to Pup's point. If you didn't sign anyone from this year's free agent class, you wouldn't be any worse off now than you are. So, how could it not help if you added a productive player at a cost less than the entire lot of hums they brought in.

As far as Shapiro and free agency, the Shapiro fan will always claim he's not given enough money where the critics will point to horrible signings. Well, there have been many horrible signings and many misses with guys signing marginal contracts. He's fashioning himself as a Billy Beane, but he's got a ways to go. The A's signed Frank Thomas a year ago for the same money the Tribe used for...Eduardo Perez. Shapiro signs Jason Johnson, Beane doesn't. Beane is also willing to let fly with young pitchers instead of signing guys who aren't going to do any better than a young pitcher who comes up and FAILS. (Byrd).

Baseball is a mess. The Tribe is small market. Shapiro is going to have to do better.
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