Sunday, May 28, 2017

What is it...

...about the Indians and expensive free agents? 

It seems like the last 'name' free agent signing we had was Orel Hersheiser.


Edwin Encarnacion is just not looking like his previous self.   Yesterday was the perfect example.   When we needed a hit he hit into a crushing double play...after taking a hanging slider on the inner half on the first pitch.  Hey, I knew the slider was coming.   Then, instead of trying to avoid the shift and shorten his stroke to drive in a run, he hits right into the shift for that back-breaker. 

The Indians should be sailing now.    Adding Encarnacion should have been the missing piece.   Rev that up a little at the trade deadline or in August with an all-star quality OFer and we would be looking pretty much invincible.

But we are left with the current version of Encarnacion and the ghosts of free agent signings like  Bourn, Swisher, Kerry Wood, Chuck Finley, Rick Dempsey (this one still hurts) and Wayne Garland.

Of course, to be fair, Juan Gonzalez, Ellis Burks and even Robbie Alomar turned out pretty well.

Still, the recent history of Swisher and Bourn skews the perspective.   We needed a 'win' with Encarnacion for a number of reasons as what Napoli brought was greater than the sum of his stats.  Encarnacion's stats and merely an average veteran presence in the locker room would have likely banged the scale off the table in his favor. 

Let's hope Encarnacion does the reverse of Wayne Garland (starting strong and then fading out) and makes us forget his 2017 April and May.   Hey, we are 24-23 with him stinking it up most nights.   Imagine what we could be with him actually producing at his average pace!

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