Although only a small sample of Cleveland Indians baseball has been played, there is already plenty to examine.
We are only 10 games into the 2016 season, but that does not mean that the most stat-driven sport in America is not already full of numbers that can show the good, bad, and ugly of the Cleveland Indians. Some numbers might surprise you. Others? Well, they are exactly what you would expect.
Tribe ERA Falling Short Of Expectations
Entering the year, it was a universal truth that the Cleveland Indians would have one of the best pitching staffs in the big leagues. Some of that has held true, which we will see later. Some of that, however, has taken a turn for the worst. The Indians rank 20th in MLB in team ERA at 4.40, while the bullpen has been especially bad, sporting a 4.97 ERA.
Supporting Stats Are Not Bad For Starters
The Tribe rotation ranks 12th in baseball for Batting Average Against with a .249 mark. That is well ahead of the highly regarded staffs of the Houston Astros, San Francisco Giants, and the St. Louis Cardinals. They are also tied for the fewest walks allowed thus far with only 16 and are ninth in WHIP with a 1.24 mark.
The Offense Is Only Average At Bes And That Is Alright
Think of the train wreck the Cleveland Indians’ offense has been over the last couple of years. Right now, the Indians are 21st in runs scored with 42 runs.
While that is less than half of league-leading St. Louis, it is not nearly as bad as it could be. They are 18th in Batting Average at .241 and in Home Runs at 10 as well as 16th in OPS with a .686 mark. All in all, that is not so bad when you think about the fact this is without Michael Brantley in the lineup.
Lefties are Still and Issue for Tribe Bats
Somehow, the Cleveland Indians have 17 runs against left-handed pitching, good for ninth in the league. However, that comes with a putrid .200 batting average, 25th in the league, and have struck out a league leading 55 times against southpaws.
Bats Not Coming Through in the Clutch
With runners in scoring position, the Tribe has a measly 17 hits, 26th in the league, with only a .218 batting average. It might not matter much, but the Cleveland Indians also only have one home run with a runner in scoring position. That, along with only producing 25 total runs, is also near the bottom in baseball.
Don’t Blame Danny Salazar
Fully healthy and focused, Salazar looks like the flamethrower we saw when he first got the call up to the big league club. He is currently ninth in ERA with a 0.79 mark. Salazar also has a 0.97 WHIP, 16 strikeouts to six walks, and has only given up five total hits all season. Salazar is simply looking great.
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Rajai Davis Is Not Just Struggling with the Sun
Poor Rajai Davis. Sunday’s error-filled performance for the Cleveland Indians against the New York Mets pumped Corey Kluber‘s ERA even higher, but it is not just on defense where Davis has had trouble. He may be second in baseball in stolen bases, but Davis also has a .225 batting average with 15 strikeouts and only nine hits on the year.
There is not a single person on staff here at Factory of Sadness that wants to see Colin Cowgill in the lineup. Ever. Why, you may ask? It might be because Tyler Naquin is a FoS staff favorite, but it is also because Cowgill is a bad baseball player.
He has exactly one hit on the year in nine at-bats and has struck out in six of those nine at-bats. We all appreciate his defense and speed off of the bench, but luckily his days are numbered with Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall coming back.
Definitely Not the Hot Corners
Juan Uribe is hitting .179, which believe it or not is a huge improvement from the sub .100 average he was sporting until a recent relative hot streak. Carlos Santana is hitting a robust .171 with only six hits on the year. It is no surprise that he leads the team in walks with six, but he is still exactly what we all know what he is at this point.
Uribe does not hit for average and not for enough power to make up for the largely empty stat line. With the way Giovanny Urshela hit in the spring, he might need to play for the Cleveland Indians sooner rather than later.