A revamped roster, an overhauled major league staff. Underpaid and unknown, this, is the 2022 Cleveland Indians.
Manager Brian Buchanan, promoted from a 6 year manager position with the AA Akron Rubberducks (3 Eastern League Championships), took over the big league managerial spot for the Indians this year. He was provided the opportunity to turn over the staff and made a change at every coaching position. GM Brent Tech allowed these changes because he felt the coaching style would be more in line with the teams available budget. This Indians team is looking to play smallball with aggressive base running, have solid pitching, and play extremely hard on defense.
To go along with the new manager’s philosophy changes, the Indians raised up or brought in a player at almost every fielding position. The outfield features only 1 player with prolonged experience in the bigs.
The Indians started the season slow under this transition, but have begun to show improvement as of late behind good pitching (2nd – SP ERA) and a slowly improving defense (4th – Def. EFF).
The pitching staff has been lead by 23 year old Julian McDonald (who made the AL All-Star team this year). Drafted in 2016 by the Cardinals, he was later released and signed to a minor league deal by the Indians. The oldest SP in the rotation is just 28 and includes 2015 draftees Erik Cha and Kyle Cody (via trade).
Though they suffered a recent string of injuries, the Indians have managed to keep pace and stay in the race for the division or wild card spot. With such a young team, that’s all this GM could hope for.