CLEVELAND, Ohio – Indian owner Paul Dolan, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and manager Terry Francona met with the team’s corporate sponsors Thursday to discuss the upcoming season. Manfred informed them that spring training and the regular season should start on time despite the ongoing coronavirus rush.
The opening of the spring training camp is planned for February 17th and the regular season for April 1st. However, there is still some uncertainty about when the baseball business will actually start.
The Indians provided three players for Zoom calls on Thursday and Friday. Newcomers Amed Rosario and Andres Gimenez were introduced to the media in Cleveland on Thursday, and Triston McKenzie spoke on Friday. All three said they had not been told when to report to the camp.
Traditionally, that date would have been anchored in their minds for months.
MLB continues to discuss how many players it can safely have in spring training facilities at one time. At the moment, it sounds like only the 40-man roster and the players destined for AAA teams are training at the same time. Class AA and A players may not be able to report until spring training when the major league and class AAA teams leave camp. This means a shortened season for the majority of the smaller players in any organization after having no season at all in 2020.
On health concerns, all of the protocols that were in place last season will be enforced this spring.
Executives trying to put their teams together are stuck in traffic. The duty roster sizes for the regular season have yet to be determined. In the 60-game sprint last year, the teams were opened with 30 players and then reduced to 28. The teams could also take a taxi with three to five players to street games.
As for the DH’s continuation in both leagues – it was featured in the National League for the first time last season – the decision rests in negotiations between the owners and the MLB Players Association. It may be that it will only be decided shortly before the regular season. That doesn’t help when creating duty rosters in the Netherlands.
At the moment the teams are in a hurry and are waiting. The key phrase is “keep your plans flowing”.
TITO SAYS OUT
It sounds like Francona is doing better. He was on a golf vacation with former Indian shortstop Eddie Leon in Hawaii. Francona is friends with Leon, a real estate developer in Tucson, Arizona, where Francona lives. Francona only managed 14 games last year due to various health problems.
LATEST EDITION OF THE NAMESPAME
Time for another mailbag with possible new names for the Indians.
You may have heard of some of them, or at least versions of them, before. Remember to put Cleveland before each entry: Legends, Pubs (for the public square), Munis (for Cleveland City Council), Believelands, Freighters, Left Wings, Wild Wings, Chicken Wings (okay, that was me, the one Your chain broke), Drummers, Sticks (I like this one), Vultures, Ions (who are still trying to wrap my brain around this one), Railroaders, Mariners (sorry, Seattle beat the Indians), Hammers (for Jack “The Hammer) Brohamer), tornadoes, yellowjackets and emeralds (for the emerald necklace).
Keep those emails coming.
RESPECT FOR HAMMERIN ‘HANK
McKenzie was born 21 years after Hank Aarons last season in the major leagues. But he still understood Aaron’s impact on the game and society after his death on Friday.
When asked how he responded to Aaron, McKenzie, 23, said, “It’s very sad. Seeing people who are such pillars of baseball culture. You say that name to people who don’t really follow baseball, you say ‘home run champion’. These are names that are synonymous with it. It is sad to see such people leave. Especially as a young black parent there is such a pillar in the black community. “
ON THE MONEY
After the Indians signed 15 international free agents on January 15, a reader asked whether the signing bonuses were paid out in a lump sum or in increments to the players, who are mostly 16 and 17 years old. The terms for the signing bonus payout are negotiable, but most players take a flat fee.
The signature period for international freelance agents is December 15th. So the Indians will definitely sign more players.
SOME NAMES TO REMEMBER
RHP Kirby Yates, who was Indian for a few minutes in 2015, signed a $ 5.5 million one-year deal with the Blue Jays. He comes from an operation on his right elbow.
BY Anthony Santander, a former Indian farm laborer, is calling for $ 3 million in arbitration, while the Orioles countered for $ 1.75 million.
Brad Hand, former tribe closerattracts the interest of Houston, Toronto, the Mets and Dodgers.
RHP Asher Wojciechowski, who went 8-2 in 2019 with a 3.61 ERA in 15 starts for the AAA Columbus class before the Indians sold him to Baltimore, will make a minor league deal with the Yankees.
RHP Jhoulys Chacin, who made seven starts for Columbus in 2015, will also land a minor league deal with the Yankees.
Tony Pena Jr., The son of former tribal catcher Tony Pena has been hired as the Kansas City infield coach.
Kevin Howard, The Indian minor league coordinator has left the organization to become the Mets’ farm director. The Indians are expected to announce their minor league staff this week.
New Indian face masks for sale: Here, you can purchase Cleveland Indian-themed face covers for coronavirus protection, including a single mask ($ 14.99) and a 3-pack ($ 24.99). All MLB proceeds are donated to charity.
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