February’s Look at the Cleveland Indians

PHOENIX - MAY 08:  (FILE PHOTO) Manager Manny ...
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The Indians started the off season by firing their manager and his coaches, but keeping most of the other front office personnel in place. They staged some what of an extensive manager search and ended on former Washington Nationals’ skipper Manny Acta.

There was a big deal made in Cleveland about bringing Bobby Valentine in for an interview as well as some discussion about Indian legend Mike Hargrove coming back to coach the Tribe. As it turned out, the Indians didn’t want to pay the money it would take to pry Valentine from Japan and Hargrove probably didn’t want to come back to a team that is continually trading away their best players.

Another name in the discussion was former Tribe third baseman Travis Fryman, who currently coaches one of the team’s Minor League clubs. His interview seemed more as a courtesy from the Tribe then a feeling of genuine interest.

So, Acta is now in charge of the ball club on Lake Erie. Many have questioned why Mark Shapiro picked Acta, who got fired from one of the only teams that have been worse than the Indians in the past few years. Speculation has it that Shapiro wanted someone who wouldn’t question his moves, which seem to be primarily decided by ownership, and who would be willing to coach whatever players were there at not a very high price.


Former Indian C Sandy Alomar Jr.

One of the traditions in Northeast Ohio is for fans to want to bring back anyone and everyone who had a hand in the Central Division winning teams in the 1990s. Well, they got their wish this off season as Sandy Alomar Jr. was signed on as a coach. This hire may have received more press action and comments in the area then the hiring of Acta did. In retrospect, this was by far the best pickup the Tribe made all off season.

Following in line with moves that should be a trade mark of the Indians, Shapiro traded away a few more starters for some players to be named later and continually insists that the Tribe is headed in the right direction. There have not been any free agency acquisitions to publicize; in fact, the Tribe has virtually done everything possible to stay out of the news since ending the regular season.

There was some excitement around the Hall of Fame voting when former Indian Roberto Alomar was believed to be a lock to get in, possible wearing an Indians hat. Unfortunately, Tribe fans couldn’t even console in that good news as Alomar came up just short, and will have to try again next year.

With Spring Training just around the corner, the Indians are starting to try to find a way to possibly get some people inside of the park, but seriously, how many Grady Sizemore promotions can one team have? The Indians were at the bottom of the league in attendance last year, and things don’t look to be getting any better.

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