Still about a week from September
Good news: Although the Columbus Clippers season will end on Sept. 5th, they are out of both the International League's Western Division race and, for all practical purposes, the IL Wild Card race. So the Indians should have nothing to wait for to expand the rosters when Sept. 1st rolls around next Saturday.
Let's look at what should happen in September:
1. Tim Fedroff - He deserves a look. Admittedly, he or Carrera only make the roster next year if Michael Brantley is a starter. For us to be competitive Brantley needs to be a 4th outfielder but that may not happen. If Brantley starts than Fedroff or Carrera should win the 4th outfielder job (please, no more AAAA guys!!!!). So Fedroff needs to play.
2. Jared Goedert - Look, he probably is not ML caliber. But he deserves a shot not just based on this year but based on last year, too. MANY teams have thrown bones to their own guys like Goedert or even AAAA guys they have brought in who had outstanding AAA seasons. Time Goedert gets his 15 minutes of fame with the hope he can turn it in to much longer.
3. Juan Diaz - Yeah, he may not be ready but he is already on the 40-man and we should bring him back as he is hitting well at Columbus and it won't change the number of options he would have as we have already used up an option when we sent him back to the minors after his cup of coffee in Cleveland earlier this year and will use another one if we send him to the minors next spring...whether or not we bring him up in September.
4. Lonnie Chisenhall - This can wait until Sept. 6th after he gets some ABs at Columbus
5. Jeanmar Gomez - We may go with 6 starters
6. Scott Barnes - Let's see what he looks like out of the bullpen in September
7. Cord Phelps - We need to decide on Phelps or Donald next year and now is a good time to get a look at both in the role they will be playing next year IF they are with this team: utility infielder
8. Chun Chen - Just give this guy a few ABs after Akron is finished with the EL playoffs just because he could be in Cleveland at some point next year AND because we will have to roster him this winter to protect him from the Rule 5 draft. Calling him up now or putting him on the roster this winter is no different. In either case if you send him out next spring you use up one of his options AND, of course, he is a good enough prospect that he SHOULD be protected on the roster this winter.
9. Frank Herrmann - IF he puts up good numbers for the next week or so and doesn't look like he is pouting, MAYBE we call him back up. Looking at his appearance last night, he may, in fact, be pouting. If this is the case don't call him up.
10. Rafael Perez - This is not really a September callup but if EVER gets healthy this year, we should give him some innings.
Don't Call up:
Sorry, Lars Anderson, Vinny Rottino, Russ Canzler, et al - This is not the place where AAAA players get a few more ML ABs. No more. Ever.
David Huff - Look, I would love to call him up but he doesn't deserve it. He has pitched like crap and you would have guessed that he would have seen his career going down the tubes and worked like heck to get back to ML caliber. He was good early but has stunk recently when he needed to be good.
Get rid of right now or leave on the DL:
2. Jack Hannahan
3. Caset Kotchman
4. Brent Lillibridge
5. Chris Seddon
6. Travis Hafner..
Look, I know this is an old horse but, darn it, get rid of these failed experiments and move on. If ANY of these guys are on the roster next year it will be a sign the Indians are as bad next year as they have shown in the last two years. Plus we don't have enough ABs to give these guys any playing time in September. Get rid of them and make a statement that Cleveland will NOT be a vacation location for AAAA players any more.
1. Zach McAllister has pitched as many as 171 IP in a season. Right now he is at 153 this year, counting time at AAA and the majors. He should be allowed 2 more starts and then he should be shut down for the season. No need to wear out his arm this year.
Look, if we make these moves we are primed for a September tryout for our minor leaguers. No more AAAA guys and a look at prospects. The fans may not like it but they didn't come out to see this team when it was good so they shouldn't be too worried about who we play in September of a lost season.