Tag: Yan Gomes

Francisco Lindor

Looking ahead to the second half: The Indians are a good bet to improve


The top of the AL Central is not terribly surprising. There the Royals sit with the biggest lead of any of the division leaders, four and a half games over the Minnesota Twins. Many people, of course, figured that the Twins wouldn’t be anyplace close to the top of the division and many suspect that they’ll falter as the second half wears on.

I can’t say I agree with that completely as the Twins have a lot of young talent and young talent has a way of not adhering to the expectations, both good and bad, people have for it. They’re not aware they’re supposed to falter, so maybe they won’t?

However the Twins shake out, it’s safe to say that no one expected the Indians to be in last place. Indeed, with their excellent rotation and big bats in Jason Kipnis, Michael Brantley, Carlos Santana, Yan Gomes and Lonnie Chisenhall, they were thought to be a favorite to win the Central or, at the very least, give the Tigers and Royals a run for their money.

Except of that group, only Kipnis has been a big bat this year, getting a lot of help from David Murphy. Brantley has been OK, but far less of a threat than last year. Gomes and Chisenhall have fallen into the abyss, in part due to injuries. Carlos Santana has struggled mightily. While the rotation has continued to pitch well —-Corey Kluber, Danny Salazar, Carlos Carrasco, and Trevor Bauer all notched 100+ strikeouts in the first half — the Indians defense has been about the worst in the game, betraying its pitchers over and over again. That’s how a promising team winds up 11 games back and tied for last place.

But that really doesn’t seem sustainable for me. For one thing, the teams above Cleveland look to falter. Perhaps the Royals won’t collapse — there’s far too much talent there — but the Tigers are already in something of a freefall and will be without Miguel Cabrera for weeks. Those Twins, again, have overachieved and could very well slip. The team with which Cleveland is tied for last place, the Chicago White Sox, has been rumored to be in sell mode at the trade deadline and could be punting 2015, creating an opening for the Tribe.

More fundamentally, however, the Indians have to get better because they can’t be worse.

There has apparently been nothing wrong physically with Carlos Santana. He’s a streaky hitter and always has been, and in the final two series before the All-Star break, went 9-for-23 (.391) with a double, triple, home run and four RBIs over seven games. If he carries that momentum into the the second half, the Indians will have another weapon on offense.

The biggest challenge will be to right the ship defensively. And even a little ship-righting will be huge, because the Indians pitchers are just dandy at run prevention. Fortunately for Cleveland, that process has already begun.

Shortstop Francisco Lindor and third baseman Giovanny Urshela were called up in June and, while they haven’t done much at the plate, they have totally revamped the left side of the Indians’ previously porous infield. Both have been dynamite with the glove and have drastically improved the Indians’ defensive efficiency in their short time. Perhaps that’s an anomaly and perhaps, with more time in the game, they’ll come back down to earth a bit. But both have good defensive pedigrees and couldn’t possibly be worse than what came before. Also, one or both of them could start hitting a little too to help even things out.

All of which brings us back to where we were before. The Indians are a wildly talented team with a great rotation and a couple of big stars on offense. On paper, it’s a team that should challenge for a playoff spot. Given the weakness of the non-Royals members of this division, they still may very well be able to in the second half, an 11-game deficit notwithstanding.

Yan Gomes on track to be activated from disabled list Sunday

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Yan Gomes has been sidelined since April 11 due to an MCL sprain in his right knee, but Indians manager Terry Francona told Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer today that he’s on track to be activated from the disabled list for Sunday’s game against the Reds.

Gomes was originally expected to miss 6-8 weeks with the injury, so he’s going to be back at the low end of that timetable. The 27-year-old has three hits in nine at-bats with two walks over four minor league rehab games and is gradually being stretched out to nine innings behind the plate.

Gomes batted .284/.325/.476 between 2013-2014, good enough for a 124 OPS+. Getting him back in the lineup and behind the plate is going to be huge for Cleveland.

Yan Gomes ahead of schedule in recovery from knee injury

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Indians catcher Yan Gomes is far enough ahead of schedule in his comeback from a sprained right knee that he could be cleared for a minor-league rehab assignment as soon as Friday, according to manager Terry Francona.

Gomes suffered a sprained MCL on April 11 and was initially expected to miss 6-8 weeks. In his absence Roberto Perez has served as Cleveland’s primary catcher, hitting just .161 with three homers and a .639 OPS in 22 games.

Gomes appeared in just five games before the injury, but had a breakout 2014 season that saw him hit .278 with 21 homers and a .785 OPS while ranking among the league’s best defensive catchers.

Yan Gomes out 6-8 weeks with MCL sprain in right knee

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Indians catcher Yan Gomes was placed on the disabled list Sunday morning with what was labeled a right knee sprain. Now the exact diagnosis is in, via MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian

Gomes suffered the injury Saturday when Rajai Davis of the Tigers slid into his right leg at home plate. It was a clean play with a nasty result. Roberto Perez took over at catcher and will serve as Cleveland’s starter for the next couple of months. Brett Hayes is expected to join the club early next week to act as Perez’s backup.

Gomes, 27, tallied 21 home runs and 74 RBI in 135 games last season. Tough blow here for the Tribe.

Yan Gomes placed on disabled list with right knee sprain

yan gomes getty

Via Nick Camino of radio station WTAM in Cleveland …

Gomes suffered the sprain Saturday when Rajai Davis slid into his right leg at home plate. The Indians note on their official Twitter account that the full extent of the injury is still being determined. It looked bad.

Cleveland did not call up a catcher on Sunday morning, so slugger Carlos Santana will presumably serve as the emergency backup to new starting backstop Roberto Perez. Gomes, 27, had 21 home runs and 74 RBI in 135 games last season for the Tribe. This is a big loss for a team that has championship aspirations.