Cleveland Indians



Cleveland Indians


Cleveland Indians primary logo.svg

Team Strengths: Cleveland built the American League’s best rotation by acquiring Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer, Carlos Carrasco and Mike Clevinger as prospects, and now there are homegrown arms to supplement them. Shane Bieber has ably stepped in with Danny Salazar addled by injuries, and No. 1 prospect Triston McKenzie may debut in 2019.
Team Weaknesses: Tyler Naquin and Bradley Zimmer have not developed as hoped, leaving the Indians perilously short in the outfield. The group is now even lighter after Michael Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall departed in free agency. A bullpen that had the majors’ fifth-worst ERA was also depleted by Andrew Miller and Cody Allen leaving.
What They Did About It: The Indians replaced Edwin Encarnacion and Yonder Alonso at designated hitter and first base, respectively, with Carlos Santana and Jake Bauers, but that didn’t address the team’s primary shortcomings. Jordan Luplow and Daniel Johnson were their only outfield additions, and Nick Wittgren was their lone bullpen addition not on a minor league deal.
Final Outlook: The Indians are more vulnerable than they’ve been in years, especially if Francisco Lindor’s calf injury lingers. Still, the overall weakness of the AL Central still makes them the favorite for a fourth straight division title.

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