Indians expectations, end of the Cavs season and Alex Mack … While We’re Waiting

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Indians and expectations: This post is from earlier in the week, but it’s still relevant for most Tribe fans. The Tribe Daily’s Nino Colla wrote about his blog and the team, sharing this great tidbit:

Irregularity my friends. This is baseball. The team is 6-6, this is the first actual post since the season started. Time to forget expectations and embrace the reality. No team is built to go 162-0. No team is even built to go 120-42. If they are, forget HGH testing, investigate them for fraud or insider trading.

Baseball is a tough sport. My article the other day about Asdrubal Cabrera had the line “On average, he’s average.” An 81-81 baseball team can be really tough to watch; they’d be frighteningly inconsistent. They might go on a six-game winning streak, then look really bad for two weeks. One never knows.

A point I made the other day: Baseball is an entirely different sport to follow than football. In football, if a team or a player underperforms in even one game, that could cost them the entire season and potentially their playing career. One game matters that much. In baseball, an All-Star could go hitless for an entire series and everything could be OK. For fans, it’s tough to balance that competitive spirit with the reality of a grinding 162-game schedule.

Final Cavs links: Well, the season is over. Stepien Rules’ Cleveland Jackson had a massive, massive mailbag (with a very nice shoutout to yours truly). His articles are always lots of fun.

Cavs: The Blog’s Tom Pestak also had a huge article about two-man lineups and their effectiveness on the court. You always have to take plus-minus data with a grain of salt, but this was still interesting.

One other article that has been trending over the last day: “Why Does the NBA Execute a Broadcast Strategy that Harms the League?” This is from Kevin Draper at The Diss. He argues that the uneven distribution of nationally televised games is “shortsighted” and “detrimental” to the league. Would love to hear your thoughts too, folks.

In terms of my thoughts: Yeah, this team improved by 9 (!) wins. In an 82-game schedule. That’s actually not that bad. Everything is on the table this offseason, which is frightening and good at the same time, but they really did improve from January-onward. Andrew will have more Cavs thoughts today. I’ll save mine for sometime soon.

Alex Mack contract details: The Alex Mack saga was one of the more drawn-out stories so far of the NFL offseason. We’re still a few weeks away from the draft, which means we’re still hearing more and more details about the actual contract that Mack ended up signing.

ESPN’s Pat McManamon shares that not only can Mack leave after the first two years, but the Browns also have mini-team options for his fourth and fifth seasons each. Year one and year two are guaranteed at $10 million and $8 million respectively. From there, it’s a series of “who picks who,” meaning the final deal is actual pretty flexible in nature.

Yes, Mack is being paid among the top offensive linemen period as simply one of the top centers. But this deal made sense for the Browns. I’ll stick to that. If Mack suddenly doesn’t perform at all, at most, they’re on the hook for $26 million over three years. Then, they’ll just not decide to give him his 2017 roster bonus and he’ll be out.

Tweets of the week: To finish, here are some goods and bads from the week on Twitter.

  • dwhit110

    Here’s the difference between Clowney and Dion Waiters… Clowney was a huge deal coming back for his senior season and was thought by many at the beginning of the 2013 college football season to be the top defensive player in college football and by some to be the consensus #1 pick before playing a game his junior year.

    Dion Waiters was a 6th man at Syracuse.

  • “Seriously though, who taught all of this country’s sports columnists to write in one sentence paragraphs?”
    These make my skin crawl. Bruce Hooley whipped about about a dozen of these bad boys in his latest. Some of them are two or three words. It’s a masterpiece of laziness.

  • MrCleaveland

    “I’m proud of my guys and being a part of something special. We fell
    short (of the playoffs) this season, but I can live with that.”


  • boomhauertjs

    He forgot to add “as long as I get to play in All-Star games and for the Olympic team, and continue to do Uncle Drew commercials.”

  • mgbode

    I call them twitter articles.

  • mgbode

    to Kyrie on not making the playoffs in the worse conference in a league where more than half the teams make the playoffs in the first place and another 6-8 teams were losing on purpose:




  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Hey it’s Cleveland!

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    He needed another year at Duke after all the year he was there wasn’t really a year. To many immature guys entering the greedy NBA. I’m interested to see what Irving does this summer as far as a contract. Will he go short or sign the longer deal? If he does indeed go short he must be traded.

  • CB Everett

    The annual spouting off that “it’s only one game in April” coupled with a condescending “relax you panicked overreactionaries” drives me insane. For baseball minds who fancy themselves on a higher plain due to statistical expertise, actually April wins do matter–literally as much as September wins.

    But fine, maybe playing bad baseball and blowing wins in April against creampuffs like the Padres, Twins and White Sox is no big deal. After all, when would it ever come down to having to win 10 games in a row at the end of the season only to finish one game out. That would be a crazy scenario.

  • Natedawg86

    And non starters don’t get picked in the top 10 in the NFL.

  • The_Real_Shamrock
  • Steve

    I’m guessing baseball isn’t your sport if you get upset over one game.

  • mgbode

    short means 3 years, which is actually 4 years since it would not kick in until after next season. you don’t trade a player because he might leave in 4 years. that is an eternity in the modern sports world.

  • mgbode

    we won the SD series. I agree that we need to beat our division opponents with regularity to be in the race at the end of the year. Hopefully, we do better against those teams moving forward. Last night was a nice start.

  • CB Everett

    I’m guessing you don’t like reading comprehension if you missed the point. The point is that April games do matter. I get it’s a lonnnng season, but the annual dismissal that the early losses are meaningless is stupid. And yes, as a fan, I don’t like any losses.

  • Steve

    Who said they don’t matter, who said they are meaningless?

    It’s about acknowledging that losing a series, even a couple series, to a bad team is well withing the range of outcomes for even the best teams in the game. There’s no evidence that they aren’t a 90 win team, just like if they were to have swept the Tigers right after taking 2 of 3 in Oakland, it wasn’t evidence they couldn’t be a 70 win team.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Obviously I would like to avoid the “trade Kyrie” talk but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be a possibility if he takes the shorter extension. Also trading him sooner into a contract where he would be locked up for multiple years is a strong selling point to potential suitors. The Cavaliers can’t afford to make an “Indians” kind of mistake IMO IF in fact Irving signs the shorter extension.

  • CB Everett

    No I get that and respect that logical analysis. I just get annoyed at the condescending tone of some (not to single out Ed Carroll who I like but):

    “Indians fans after a loss are like wounded animals, snapping at and blaming anything they can. It happens. Its April.”

    It disarms fans from being pissed when we start out flat (yet again in April), and the team isn’t just losing (the record is ok), but we aren’t playing sound fundamental baseball, and there certainly isn’t any momentum of “unfinished business.” Fans are allowed to be frustrated with an Assdribble Cabrera even though he will probably round into some average form when all is said and done. We’re allowed to be pissed and expect a good product and wins against bad teams even though things will somewhat average out. But we’re allowed to be demanding even in April. Especially in April if they want some attendance.

  • Steve

    I’m not sure I can agree that the NBA’s strategy is detrimental. The Wizards being less popular than expected in Washington should have little to do with national TV games. I think it’s a fair assumption to make that the Wizards are on TV every night in DC, flipping between the local Comcast SportsNet to TNT shouldn’t make a difference to the viewers. As soon as the Wizards being a bigger draw nationally than say the Knicks, they’ll be on TNT frequently. Just like when the Cavs became a big draw and were on national TV around 30 times a year.

    And when comparing to the NFL, we see that actually the NFL does have a bias towards showing the big markets of the NFC East, and that those games draw better. http://awfulannouncing.com/2013/nbc-and-nfl-might-be-rethinking-week-13-flex.html

    These people who put the games on TV aren’t stupid.

  • Steve

    Fans always think they are allowed to be demanding at all times of the year. If that’s how you enjoy the game, then go for it I guess. Personally, I find it much more enjoyable not to get my dander up at least 60 times a year. Especially when the team is actually winning more than losing.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Looks like Parker is leaving Duke early to chase the NBA $$$$ I mean dream.

  • humboldt

    Smacks of the Brandon Weeden “I still had fun out there” comment after his 4 INTs against the Eagles in the 2012 opener.

  • pfffffft

    What fool turns down the chance to become a top-3 pick? Lay off the smarm, grandpa

  • getthatweakstuffouttahere

    He played in crunch time, and played starter minutes. You’re both trolling hard.