2017 Positional Previews, Indians, Podcast

2017 Cleveland Indians Positional Previews: The Starting Rotation

The Cleveland Indians’ starting rotation is considered by many to be the engine of the team, anchored by former Cy Young Award winner Corey Kluber. With fellow ace Carlos Carrasco, and potential future aces is Danny Salazar and Trevor Bauer, the top end of this staff can match up with anyone.

The fact that playoff hero Josh Tomlin is considered by many to be a footnote to the “thunderarms” ahead of him really says it all. With the staff back and healthy after Carrasco and Salazar missed substantial crunch time (discounting brief Salazar sightings), some are saying that the starting five are as good a rotation as there is in all of baseball.

WFNY’s Mike Hattery and Jim Pete take a look at why this rotation is so good, and why there is still cause for concern. They also take a look at the Columbus rotation, Mike Clevinger, and why Cody Anderson’s UCL injury is giving them nightmares.

Catch up on the positional previews:
Catcher |  First Base |  Second Base |  Third Base | Shortstop | Outfield

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  • Conways
  • Cody Anderson is shut downs, and Jim has rotation angst
  • The rotation is the third best unit on the team
  • The Big Three
  • Can Carlos Carrasco overtake Kluber as the top arm
  • Danny Salazar is the puzzle piece…dependent on control
  • How will that 10-day DL and bullpen balance the usage of the rotation, especially with Kluber’s innings in 2016, and Salazar’s injury issues?
  • Saving Andrew Miller for the playoffs
  • How many innings do you expect from Danny Salazar?
  • Salazar is a playoff, four-inning weapon
  • Kluber has grooved into awesome
  • The Trevor Bauer experiment…when does it stop being an experiment?
  • Outing teammates political views, and how Trevor Bauer could give a shit less
  • Bauer made the transition to a ground ball pitcher in 2016
  • Supplemental depth vs. long-term rotation depth
  • Why didn’t the Indians sign a lottery ticket who could fit into the rotation long-term, if needed?
  • Doug Fister
  • To be high on Clevinger, or not to be, but he is a high upside guy…without command
  • Can Clevinger figure out control this late in the game?
  • How elite is this rotation…really?
  • Rotational dominoes, and how Kluber and Carrasco and affect the rest
  • Oh yeah…Callaway!
  • Will a healthy rotation mean 100 wins?
  • A Jason Donald reference?
  • Are we heading to a situation where we don’t have a rotation or a bullpen, but just pitchers
  • Love it or hate it, but the Indians are at the forefront of specialized baseball
  • I plug Mike, and Mike plugs me, and we both plug Adam Burke…and screw Jeff…putting his family ahead of us..it’s just not right

  • Chris

    I had a chat with a friend from Chicago before Game 1 discussing what each of us probably doesn’t know about the opposing team/players. I took the stance that when “on”, Carrasco had better stuff than Kluber. Everyone knows Kluber is a damn good pitcher, but his consistency and durability are head-and-shoulders above everyone else on the staff.

    So the short of it, I agree with your takes on Carrasco at the 10:05 and 11:15 marks. He has Cy Young talent, particularly if he improves his consistency. That would be a lot of fun to watch.

  • Thanks for listening Chris…love the heck outta Carrasco. I really, REALLY hope he stays healthy…

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  • mgbode

    Cookie has had the most random injuries/issues. He’s still my favorite starting pitcher on the team.

  • jshmeezy6

    I almost think Salazar has the most talent out of all three, but he can’t even keep it consistent enough for 7 or 8 straight innings. Brantley and Kipnis’s injuries don’t necessarily scare me as much as most because I think the rotation can take another step forward if there is some semblance of health from Kluber/Carrasco/Salazar. It’s more the longterm health of those two that makes me anxious.

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  • Carrasco has a boatload of talent, and there isn’t a person on the planet that loves Salazar as much as I do. I used to write at a place where the “lead writer” kept saying his stuff was only good enough for the bullpen. I wanted to fight him. His fastball/split change combo is insanely good. If he could figure out the Kluber consistency…to go along with his electricity…the sky is the limit.

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