For those of you who expect poetry to rhyme, “June Swoon” must seem clever. For those of us who have heard that tune too many times in the last, oh, 60 years, it is the antithesis of wit.
We are at that point again. Can the Indians season be salvage by a genius trade or crafty waiver pickup? We all know the minor leagues are picked clean, with the possible exception of Tyler Naquin.
You might remember 2011 when the Indians boldly looked west and traded for Colorado Rocky Ubaldo Jimenez. It seemed so out of character to offer a package including two promising pitchers (Alex White and Drew Pomeranz along with Joe Gardner and Matt McBride). Cleveland fans were used to the Indians trading their veterans for promising prospects. Some paid off — Grady Sizemore, Michael Brantley. Others did not — I will spare you those ugly details.
Watching Francona address reporters after the game it seems safe to assume that he is frustrated and grasping for solutions. Based on his past, it seems he would find a “give-up-and-trade-for-the-future” strategy distasteful. If he has better options, he was not sharing them Tuesday night.
When Francona wakes up Wednesday, the Indians will still be 32-37 and more than eight games out of first place. Additionally, he face two more games against the Tigers who have beaten the Indians eight games out of 10 this year. It doesn’t even help that the games are in Cleveland. The Indians have the league’s worst home record at 14-21.
Tribe ownership might conclude this team isn’t playing well enough to merit additional investment, either in talent or cash.
For those reasons, the third option seems most likely. They will do little or nothing and hope the team can play better. That requires building confidence in players who know they are underperforming, a tough thing to summon with the Tigers in town.