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Indians were 2 minutes away from adding Randy Jonhson in '98

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Indians were 2 minutes away from adding Randy Jonhson in '98

Unread postby British_Pharaoh » Mon Jun 24, 2013 6:43 pm

http://www.waitingfornextyear.com/2013/ ... on-in-1998

John Hart and Carlos Baerga were in Cleveland this weekend getting inducted into the Indians Hall of Fame. Hart, the Tribe’s GM during the mid-90s run, reminisced about some of the deals that got away. He told the Plain Dealer’s Terry Pluto that while he doesn’t regret not trading Jaret Wright (along with Bartolo Colon and others) to the Expos for Pedro Martinez, he really wishes his 1998 deal for Randy Johnson would’ve gone through.

Brian Giles, Richie Sexson and Dave Burba?!??! Oh. My. God. After the trade deadline, Johnson was an absolute beast for the Houston Astros, going 10-1 with a 1.28 ERA in eleven starts. He notched 116 strikeouts in just 84.1 innings pitched. That is insane. The trade (or moving to the NL) seemed to energize the Big Unit, as pre-deadline he was rather pedestrian, going 9-10 with a with a 4.33 ERA in 23 starts for the Mariners.
The Indians went up 2-1 on the Yankees in the 1998 ACLS before eventually falling 4-2. Tribe starters Dwight Gooden, Chad Ogea and Charles Nagy took the loss in each of the final three games.
The Big Unit in an Indians uniform. For Brian Giles, Dave Burba and Richie Sexson. Wow. In no way is this depressing.
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Re: Indians were 2 minutes away from adding Randy Jonhson in

Unread postby Dellucci TailGator » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:04 pm

No, the depressing part is the Indians got Ricardo Rincon, Jason Bere, Steve Woodard and Bob Wickman for Giles and Sexson over the next two years, as John Hart sold the next five years of contention away for duct tape and super glue to patch up that aging pitching staff. Granted, Hart put all his eggs in the Colon and Wright basket, but that offnese should've stayed fully stocked throughout the mid 2000s with Giles, Sexson and Thome in the middle of it. Instead they had to go to older short-term rental guys like Burks, Juan Gonzalez, Marty Cordova.

Hart did so much to build that team of the 1990s, but he also did some short-sighted things to end that run prematurely. He also had plumb bad luck with Jaret Wright, who along with Colon and CC would've made a fearsome top of the rotation.
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Re: Indians were 2 minutes away from adding Randy Jonhson in

Unread postby googleeph2 » Tue Jun 25, 2013 11:56 am

Ever since that 1998 season, I was saying the failure to land Johnson was going to help define Hart's tenure. It does, for me.

I remember the day Johnson got traded by the Mariners. The rumors were everywhere how he was being dangled. On the block. Seattle was playing someone the day he was dealt. Probably the Yankees or someone, since it was on TV. The camera kept going back to the Seattle dugout. Johnson was sitting up on the back of the dugout bench. Midway through the game, the spot was vacant. He had left the dugout. A trade was going down. Was he coming to Cleveland?

Nope. Yes, he'd had the bad back or whatever. But at the time, I thought getting him was the right move. They were the big boys on the block, the bullies with the thumper lineup. They needed some bullies on the staff. Hart flinched.

I have been 180 degrees wrong on some things (I insisted they should have traded Cliff Lee- the year before he won the Cy Young). But failing to grab Johnson was something I always hated.
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Re: Indians were 2 minutes away from adding Randy Jonhson in

Unread postby Dnthateonthepronk » Tue Jun 25, 2013 1:32 pm

I've heard that a few times before in other publications. What mighta been but thats how it goes.
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