Today is as good of a time as any for the Cleveland Indians to make a change to their daily roster.
The Cleveland Indians bullpen has their own share of problems which the team is working through. As that goes on, their offense could use a boost too.
This past offseason I was on the side of doing what it takes to replace Jason Kipnis among other well-known Tribe players. Well, I maintain that stance as Kipnis has simply been horrible. So far, he has contributed a .181 average, 1 home run, and a -0.5 WAR.
Kipnis is just part of the problems Cleveland has that are non-pitching related. However, stating what he has done is a good example of why the Tribe are just .500 going into Friday’s game.
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On their current roster, there is not much flexibility. No, Eric Gonzalez playing does not do anything to help Cleveland’s circumstances despite being the main utility player.
While decreased playing time for some and/or positional changes would be nice, I am not holding my breath. Outside of a trade, the only other option is looking at Triple-A Columbus.
One player that the Indians should call up is Yandy Diaz. Yes, the same Diaz who played sparingly last season in Cleveland.
He showed some promise but like Jesus Aguilar and others, he hasn’t had enough of a consistent opportunity to prove he can be a MLB player.
The Indians will have to take the good with the bad with Diaz. However, given how Kipnis has played and some of the outfielders either being injured or not playing up to their ability, it is worth the call up.
Diaz could be a DH, 3B, or a corner outfielder for the Tribe. By playing him at the hot corner, Jose Ramirez can slide over to second replacing Kipnis.
While with the Clippers in the minors, Diaz has played the majority of his game at 3B. The others have been at DH. This season Diaz has put up a .900 fielding percentage to go along with a .263 batting average and 20 RBI in 23 games.
Diaz is not the answer that will solve every offensive issue for the Indians. The more plate appearances he has will also help him both in the short and long-term regardless of where he plays. With just 156 at bats, any and all experience is needed.
Now, anything could happen by calling up Diaz but by calling him up, Diaz needs to start regularly. Otherwise, he does not help Cleveland enough.
By calling up Diaz, he could just repeat his play of failed expectations. Or, Diaz could prove to the Indians organization that he can be Cleveland’s 3B of the future instead with Ramirez replacing Kipnis. I don’t like moving Ramirez from 3B but his familiarity at 2B makes this an easy transition.