Cheap Indians break off talks with Justin Masterson

Good grief. There’s every reason to e excited about the Cleveland Indians this year, as the young pitching staff has huge potential and they have a solid lineup. With Terry Francona at the helm and a higher budget for free agents, the Dolans finally decided to join the major leagues again and actually compete, as opposed to just acting as a minor league team for franchises who were serious about winning.

But these negotiations with Justin Masterson are a real buzz kill. Masterson offered the Indians a proposal for only 2-3 years with a reasonable salary given today’s market. Sure, the Indians have plenty of young pitching and can probably survive losing Masterson. But Masterson isn’t insisting on a ridiculous long-term deal. He gave the Indians a real option, and the should have come to terms with him.

Now they’ve given Tribe fans another reason to be skeptical, and we’ll have to hear more stories about payroll and attendence in a year when everyone should be excited about the team’s chances.

The Dolans came a long way last year in rebuilding some trust with the fans. I gave up my season tickets when they unloaded Cliff Lee for a song one year too early, and many other fans were finished with them after that abomination. Now they’re taking another step back when they should be celebrating a real contender.

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Indians top pick Clint Frazier has good first season in minors

Clint Frazier

I met Clint Frazier at the 2013 Gatorade High School Athlete of the Year Awards where he was honored for baseball of course. He was in great company as you can see in the photo above. He’s in the top left in the photo, and you’ll recognize basketball prodigy Andrew Wiggins in the photo as well.

I also had the opportunity to interview Frazier as you can see in the video below. Frazier comes across as a great kid who is also very confident in his abilities and his career prospects. He seems like the kind of guy that can be an anchor in your clubhouse.

Of course that’s great news for the Indians, who made Frazier their top pick in the 2013 baseball draft. The selection got great reviews around baseball circles, and things have worked out well so far. Frazier batted .297 with a .362 on-base percentage and 21 extra-base hits. Baseball America then named him the top prospect in the Arizona Summer League. So far so good!

Check out the video and you’ll probably be hearing much more from him in years to come.

Indians need to take advantage of Houston series.

The Tribe has stayed in the hunt all season, but they’ve fallen on their faces several times when they’ve had a critical series. The Detroit sweep comes to mind right away, but it’s happened many times.

Then of course they bounce back just when everyone is ready to write them off.

But now the Indians have Houston coming to town and they’re just a half game out of the Wild Card. They need to win at least three games in this four-game series. A sweep would be ideal of course. Then they have the White Sox and the Twins to finish off the season. It’s all set up for them, but they have to step up and grab it.

Tribe stays in the hunt

It seems like the Indians have blown the season on numerous occasions – most spectacularly by getting swept at home by Detroit and then most recently by getting swept on the road in Atlanta. But this team keeps coming back and hanging around.

Justin Masterson is hurt, but now Corey Kluber will be back to possibly save the day as the starting pitching is keeping the Tribe alive.

Baseball is a funny sport, and despite all of their problems the Indians would have a shot if they manage to get into the playoffs. We’re all obsessed with the Browns right now, but I’m not giving up on the Tribe yet.

Indians give up on Mark Reynolds

Mark Reynolds got off to such a great start for the Indians that many fans were clamoring for the Tribe to sign him to a long-term contract earlier this season. Then reality set in a Reynolds went a month without getting an RBI.

The Indians designated Reynolds for assignment today, effectively giving up on the slugger for 2013. Meanwhile, they locked up Ryan Raburn with a contract extension earlier in the week. The obviously feel Raburn can continue to provide power from the right side of the plate, and they couldn’t afford to wait for Reynolds to rediscover his stroke. That’s even more true as the Indians continue to scuffle against the Tigers.