April 3rd, 2012 at 1:43 PM ^

The question is: can you expect Verlander to have anything close to the season that he had last year? Probably not. #4 is PDG for a guy that plays in 1/5 of the games.


April 3rd, 2012 at 2:18 PM ^

In a non biased world that is a valid point.  I would go out on a limb to say the JV has his best season this year, though.  He struggled with some inconsistentsy and with power behind him at the plate this year, he can afford to be a lot more aggressive.


April 3rd, 2012 at 2:29 PM ^

I agree with your point, but really wanna address the every 5th day comment. A good pitcher does so much for a team: by going deep into games they keep the bp fresh, stop slides and start streaks, can minimize a weak defensive player/unit, can put pressure on the other pitcher (causing them to overthrow and be more eradic). Furthermore, an offensive player is so dependent on the players around them. A pitcher on the opposite team can pitch around them if there is no protection within the lineup, as well as the hitter can't get RBIs without guys on base.

I am not saying that pitchers are so far and away better than hitters, but the argument that both can't equally contribute to the success of a team bc one pitches every fifth day is wrong in my opinion


April 3rd, 2012 at 3:31 PM ^

The 1/5 argument is pretty poor for a lot of reasons, but on a basic level his workload usually has him facing more batters in a year than the number of at bats a position player typically gets.  And while pitcher isn't a high spectrum defensive position once the ball it hit, his high strikeout numbers provide many opportunities when the team doesn't even have to play defense.

There's a good argument to be made that he was so dominant that it'd be difficult to repeat last year. But looking at the list, Halliday is older, and as just as much a chance of regressing as JV, possibly more. Verlander was also dominant in the AL which is a superior hitting environment.

Benoit Balls

April 3rd, 2012 at 3:01 PM ^

So proud to see our two aces, CC Sabathia and Cliff Lee ranking #11 and #18 respectively in the poll. So excited for the upcoming season! What a great day to be a Tribe fan.

(do I really need it? ok)


Benoit Balls

April 3rd, 2012 at 4:04 PM ^

and Lindor has already shown some flashes, but by the time he comes up, Masterson and Jimenez will likely be gone, and since they only signed Asdrubal to a 2 year extension, I fear he will be as well.  LaPorta is what he is, and our outfield is a disaster (shelly Duncan is an awesome clubhouse guy, but come on)

For some reason they decided to sign Grady to an extension with $5 million (or 10% of our payroll) guaranteed.  Between Hafner and Grady, that is about a third of our payroll in dead money. Some teams can overcome those issues (some teams would be happy to ONLY have 18 million in dead long are the Mets on the hook for Bonilla?), but the Indians cannot.

I am irrationaly optimistic optimistic about this team, but in order for them to have a chance at 86-90 wins, their pitching is going to have to be lights out. Everyone has hope in spring training, and I fear by July 4th, we could be looking up at not only the Tigers, but the Royals as well.


April 3rd, 2012 at 4:14 PM ^

The Indians will probably have around the same record as last year, no notable improvements, Ubaldo has had an awful spring so I'm not sure what they'll get out of him. I'll be interested to see what kind of improvements Pomeranz, and White have with the rockies, word all through spring is that Pomeranz has been very productive and has shown improved control.

I agree the Royals are the team that could finish either 2nd or 3rd in the division they have some great bats in their lineup with Hosmer, Butler, Gordon, Francoeur, Mostakas, and when  Perez comes back watch out. Their pitching is beyond horrible though, Bruce Chen is their opening day starter, and Hochever has been a bust of a #1 selection. Johnathon Sanchez will have to return to form if this team hopes to compete, they are a year or so away.


April 3rd, 2012 at 4:33 PM ^

The Sizemore money sucks now because he got hurt and yes you can look back and say he's injury prone so they could have seeen this, but I still think it was a good calculated risk. For that amount of money there's almost no way you can a difference maker and a heathy Sizemore absolutely is a difference maker.

The Tigers are so loaded this year a team like Cleveland is better off taking a chance on an upside play because it's going to be hard to win the division by just slugging it out.



April 3rd, 2012 at 4:12 PM ^

I'm OK with it.

Despite how amazing Verlander was last season, if my life were dependent upon a team winning a single game and I was permitted to choose any pitcher to take the mound for me, I'd still go with Doc Halladay.

It's the same for Pujols and Miggy. You get to choose one player for an at bat with the bases loaded, two outs, and if a run isn't driven in you're dead. I'd go with Albert. 


April 3rd, 2012 at 4:34 PM ^

The Pujols and Miggy comparison is pretty interesting because if you put me in that situation now I'd take Cabrera to the bank over Pujols just about any day of the week. Pujols numbers (Avg. OBP. & SLG) have declined across the board since 2008, whereas Cabrera's have increased in that same timeframe. Since Miguel is 3 years younger than Albert's reported age that to me looks like a guy who's pretty clearly in the middle of his prime maybe even still getting better (Cabrera) vs. a guys who's starting to leave his prime (Pujols). Albert Pujols is still a top 10 player but he looks to be on the decline. As a Mariner's fan I can only say I hope I am right and that the Pujols contract is an albatross around the Angel's neck for years to come.