Back with our Factory Lines: A Daily Assembling of Cleveland Sports Headlines.
Outfielder Michael Brantley has agreed to a four-year, $25 million deal with an $11 million club option for a fifth year with the Cleveland Indians, a baseball source confirmed to ESPN.com’s Jerry Crasnick.
Brantley, 26, hit .284 with 10 home runs and 73 RBIs last season, his fifth with the Indians.
Brantley is the type of glue guy that is needed on all teams. He may never develop the type of power that allows the club to pick up the $11 million option for the 5th year. Brantley has developed at a slow and steady pace, doing nothing overly well but being good in most areas. His clutch hitting earned him the Twitter nickname Dr. Smooth.
This isn’t that surprising but it’s showing that the Cavs are truly committed to Irving. Saying he’s untouchable only means so much though, as the team needs to build a winner around him or Irving will very much want to be touched by everyone except that Cavaliers’ diseased fingers.
Saying Irving is untouchable flies in the face of Dan Gilbert’s statements following the departure of Lebron James. Gilbert said he would look to move any player that wasn’t committed to the team long term. That could include Irving in the next couple years and includes Luol Deng this year. Fansided is right that building a winning team around him is all that matters.
The Cleveland Browns catch a break with their schedule in 2014.
Browns opponents have a combined .465 won-lost percentage next season, which makes their schedule the 26th toughest in the league — or to look at it another way, the seventh easiest.
Pat McManamon makes our Factory Lines 2 days in a row. The Browns SOS is seventh easiest but the rest of the AFC North plays a similar schedule. SOS plays a role in tie breakers both for the playoffs and for draft picks. The hope is next year it only becomes a issue for the playoffs. Every year about half the playoff teams are changed so last year’s winning percentages probably don’t mean that much.
What news did we miss? What did you find important in the last 24 hours or so of Cleveland sports? Talk to us in our comment section below