The Indians got pounded again today. No big deal, just business as usual.
The real problem that I have with the club today is the horrendous start that Aaron Laffey posted in a rehab assignment for Akron.
Lasting only 3 and 1/3rd innings Laffey gave up five hits and three runs, all earned. The worst parts of this outing for Laffey is that he gave up 6 walks in his short outing and was even afforded a slim lead prior to blowing up.
I guess he was just trying to emulate the other Indians pitchers (except good ol' Clifford).
Though this was just Laffey's first start since being sat down with a strained right oblique muscle more is expected of the young lefty. I won't dismiss the competition at the AA level, because the Indians have two players (Carlos Santana and Nick Weglarz) who I believe could compete at the big league level very soon.
Hopefully Laffey is not still hurting and will be able to rebound nicely and show the stuff that brought him to Cleveland.
In other news some more information has been revealed about the deal that sent Mark DeRosa to the Cardinals. Specifically about the PTBNL.
According to St. Louis Post Dispatch writer Bernie Miklasz's Twitter account the determination of the PTBNL will hinge upon whether or not the Cardinals are able to sign DeRo beyond the '09 season.
Fox Sports Jon Paul Morosi cites "an official with knowledge of the transaction" who has mentioned a few possibilities from within the Cardinals organization that may be available to the Indians in the coming months. Specifically mentioned are hard-throwers Jess Todd and Francisco Samuel.
Future Redbirds lists the upside to Todd beginning with his fast ascension from college ball through the lower levels of the Cardinals system. Todd has two plus pitches: a 90-94 mph four-seamer and a hard mid-80's slider that he uses as his out pitch. He also has throws an average or below upper-80's two-seamer and a circle change that moves like a splitter. Long term Todd projects to be a reliever according to the blog, overall he seems to be a hard-throwing pitcher that could impact the club soon.
Samuel is a reliever currently pitching for the Cards AA affiliate. Through 31.2 innings he has gone 4-4 with a 4.55 ERA and earned 18 saves. His strikeout totals are impressive with 39 already this season and 85 in 56.1 innings last year at the high A level. Though he is small, listed at 150 lbs., he throws a hard fastball, clocking in at 94-96 mph. St. Louis Cardinal Scout expects to see him reach the AAA level before the end of the season, making him a viable bullpen arm for a big league club in the near future.
Obviously it will be a long time before we find out the results of this deal, but with Chris Perez donning the Tribe cap for the first time tomorrow night, hopefully we'll see some upside quickly.