A funny thing happened to the Cleveland Indians in 2011. They won a lot more games than many thought they would, especially early in the season. That led to a lot more people coming out to the ballpark — about 450,000 more — which made the team money. And because generally smart people run the Indians, they want to continue to win more ballgames and thus continue to draw more fans.
At least that’s the conclusion I reached based on GM Mark Antonetti’s comments to Jordan Bastian of MLB.com that the Indians will raise payroll “significantly” in 2012.
No idea what they’ll spend it on — Antonetti wasn’t specific — but as long as they still have a place for Shelley Duncan, I’ll be cool with it.
According to MLB.com associate reporter Jarrid Denney, right-hander Michael Pineda threw off a mound Wednesday morning at Target Field for the first time since undergoing Tommy John surgery.
Pineda was signed to a two-year, $10 million free agent contract this winter by the Twins, who are probably more focused on what he might be able to do in 2019 rather than 2018.
He had the reconstructive elbow surgery last July 18, so he won’t be an option for the Minnesota rotation until probably late August or September of this year. Still, that deal seems like a nice gamble given the price point and the possibility that he will regain his form as a No. 2 or No. 3 starter. That he’s making steady progress in his rehab makes the situation all the more encouraging.
Pineda, 29, holds a 4.05 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, and 687 strikeouts in 680 career major league innings.