I’ve already complained about the Indians’ lack of activity in the free agent market this off-season. There are some positives to that inactivity though – the bullets you happen to dodge. I heard a number of rumors about various players the Indians were “interested in,” and just kept my fingers crossed that they didn’t actually sign any of them. Here are a few players that I’m glad will be someone else’s problem come Spring Training:
Casey Blake – He battled injury with the Los Angeles Dodgers last season, and they declined his option. Even though the Indians had interest, he ended up with the Colorado Rockies. I know that he’s a right-handed bat and that he’s a favorite with many Indians fans (although I am not one of those fans), but the Tribe is better off without him. Last year he only played in 63 games and hit .252/.342/.371 with four home runs, which is below his career numbers. I think he’ll be a good fit in Colorado, but am glad he won’t be coming to Cleveland.
Mark DeRosa – Another player that has battled injuries over the past couple of seasons, he played just 47 games in 2011 and 26 in 2010. He had respectable numbers in limited action in 2011 – .279/.351/.302. He will attempt a comeback with the Washington Nationals, which thankfully, is not the Indians.
Austin Kearns – I know the Indians ended up designating him for assignment last summer, but I just kept thinking to myself “so when are they announcing that Kearns is invited to Spring Training?” Did anyone else just see this coming a mile away? Thankfully, Kearns just signed with the Miami Marlins on a minor league deal. I was more excited about that than all of the Indians’ off-season moves put together.
Jamey Carroll – What is with the Indians and reunions with mediocre to average ballplayers this off-season? They reportedly had some level of interest in Carroll, until he signed a 2-year deal with the Minnesota Twins. The 38-year-old utility infielder managed to get $3.85 million out of them; I feel like they kind of bid against themselves on this one. He’ll now end up hitting approximately 5 home runs against the Indians this season since I said all of these things.
Edit: You can add Chad Durbin to the list. He signed with the Washington Nationals today on a minor league deal.
Anybody that you are glad the Indians avoided this off-season? I picked people who were linked to the Tribe in rumors, but you don’t have to use that criteria.