The Indians have become the sexy pick for lots of people to get the American League wild card, but I will guarantee right here and now that it will not happen. What the Indians needed this year is exactly what they needed last year: a big veteran bat that can step in when the team is slumping and get the big hit. The 1995 team had Eddie Murray and Dave Winfield (and Dennis Martinez and Orel Hersheiser in the pitching staff). The 2005 team has no one who is even analogous to those guys. The Indians are tremendously talented. As I said a few years ago, even if only a few of the dozen blue chip prospects they got in the firesales of 3-5 years ago panned out, they would be in business. They are in business. Hafner, Martinez, Sizemore, Sabathia, and Lee are all for real, and there are a bunch of other guys who are right there on this team. But talent isn't enough. There are intangibles that come with individual players in sport, but especially in baseball.
Veteran stars, even guys who are on the downside, have seen it all. They know how to not get caught up in a team slump, and that ability can end a team slump before it gets started. Last year the Indians slumped at the end because no one could step in and stop it--it is only matter of time before they do the same this year.
Monday, October 03, 2005
I Hate It When This Happens
I really do. I wrote this on September 4:
Posted by Tom at 2:53 PM