Yesterday, I saw multiple reports that shook my inner Indians fan to its core.
First Buster Olney said this…
Some rival evaluators believe that Shin-Soo Choo will now land in Detroit, to play LF. We’ll see.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) November 21, 2013
Then reports surfaced that Robinson Cano was on his way to Kansas City to sign with the Royals.
If you’re an Indians fan, this all hurts tremendously.
First of all, the Tigers, should they sign Shin-Soo Choo, might just be the best team in baseball. Take a gander at this lineup, should Shin Soo make his way to the Motor City.
That lineup at its face value could easily take on any in the league. Meanwhile, Detroit houses baseball’s best pitching staff.
The worst part of it all is that Dave Dombrowski seems to be on a World Series mission and will use all of the cash in the world to get there.
In other words, they’re not done yet. Not even close.
While the Tigers will certainly have the upper hand on the Indians seemingly regardless of the situation, the Tribe could at least compete with a Choo-less Tigers lineup. Once you put the former Indians star at the top of that order, who knows just how far the talent gap will grow.
All the while, Omar Vizquel has taken the job of first base coach in Detroit.
First Victor. Then Omar. Now Choo?
Detroit is slowly but surely destroying the Indians and their fan-base former player by former player.
Meanwhile, another AL Central team seems be on a mission and ready to spend some cash.
Rumors yesterday are showing that Robinson Cano may just be the newest member of the Kanas City Royals, in what would be an earth shattering development. Should that splash happen, the Royals could easily move into the second rung of the AL Central ladder and could become a legitimate World Series contender.
Add in the top end of their pitching staff and they might be one of the most under-the-radar teams in all of baseball.
First, the Tigers go out and get much better by moving Miguel Cabrera to first base, adding Ian Kinsler to the mix and potentially adding Shin-Soo Choo. Then, the Royals get the most highly sought after free agent in all of baseball.
Of course these are both hypothetical, but reported, circumstances, but in any case, can the Indians catch a break?
Sure, the Indians did get better on Wednesday by signing David Murphy to take over the everyday right field duties, but the Indians can’t compete with the suddenly big market teams in Detroit and Kansas City, should these deals go down.
The worst part is, there’s really nothing they can do about it. The Indians don’t have the money to put a bid in on Robinson Cano. They can’t make a deal to bring back Choo. They just simply can’t make these splashes as, apparently, Detroit and Kansas City can.
This is all to say, Indians fans, that maybe last year, despite its heartbreak towards the end, was as good as its going to get. Maybe the magic that Jason Giambi, Nick Swisher and Ubaldo Jimenez brought to the corner of Carnegie and Ontario last season was as good as its going to get for a while.
The Tigers and Royals may be on the verge of taking over the American League and leaving the lowly Indians, White Sox and Twins in the dust.
Despite all of the good that Terry Francona, Chris Antonetti and Mark Shapiro have done for the Indians and for the city of Cleveland, it may all be for naught. The Indians, for the forseeable future, may be trapped in the dark, vast dungeon of the American League Central Division.
Is there anything they can do to get out, should Choo and Cano sign within this division?
Yes, but it would be very, very unlikely.
First of all could get out of the dungeon by getting lucky again and again as they did last season with Scott Kazmir, Ryan Raburn, Yan Gomes and Mike Aviles. If Antonetti continues to pull off moves such as those, the Indians can compete.
Even then, however, things will still be difficult.
They would still have to spend money to solidify their rotation, which is decent but needs a little help. They would also need prospects like Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez and Jesus Aguilar to be all that we expected and more.
Again, its not impossible, just very, very unlikely.
Other than that, just hope that these two rumors were nothing but. Hope that Choo and Cano sign with the Yankees, as that organization is a continual mess.
If you’re an Indians fan, however, just accept that should Cano and Choo sign in the Central, the new era of Indians excellence may come to a tragic and screeching halt.
All of the hope and optimism could be over with a few simple swoops of a fateful pen. Enjoy it, Tribe fans, because very soon, the fun could be over.