Leo: Holiday Hustle
The holiday season is in full force, but the Cleveland Indians and Columbus Clippers front offices are not ready to start vacation just yet.
The Tribe has been busy over the last week or so, hiring a couple of baseball operations directors, signing free agents, making a trade, setting it’s broadcast team, and finalizing the spring broadcast schedule.
The Clippers front office has been extremely busy as well, adding new items in the Cargo Shop and introducing some season ticket mini-plans.
Here is the skinny…
- Derek Falvey and David Stearns have been appointed to the position of Director of Baseball Operations.
Falvey is in his fifth season with the Cleveland Indians and has been a member of the Cleveland Indians Baseball Operations Department since joining the club in November 2007. He spent the 2011 season as Assistant Director of Baseball Operations. In his role as Director, his focus will be primarily on player personnel and acquisitions.
Stearns joins the Indians after spending the last three years since working for the MLB Commissioner’s Office in New York City. Most recently he held the position of Manager, Labor Relations; assisting club’s in the salary arbitration process, handling uniform player contracts and was a member of MLB’s negotiating team for the recently completed Collective Bargaining Agreement. In his new position with the Indians, Stearns will focus primarily on player contracts, strategy and analysis.
- The Indians have agreed to a contract extension with Tom Hamilton to continue as the radio “Voice of the Indians”.
Hamilton was promoted to the top position on the Indians broadcast team in 1998 following the retirement of the legendary Herb Score. He will enter his 23rd season with the Tribe, following a three-year stint as a broadcaster for the Clippers (1987-89).
Jim Rosenhaus will partner will Hamilton full-time in 2012. Rosenhaus, the former voice of the Buffalo Bisons, has spent the past five years as the producer/engineer for the Indians Radio Network and host of Indians Warm Up. In addition, Jim has had the opportunity to call play-by-play on a part-time basis when needed and last year partnered with Tom on the majority of the road broadcasts. Congrats to Rosey, a friend an excellent broadcaster!
- The Indians announced the spring training broadcast schedule on Friday. SportsTime Ohio will broadcast six Cactus League games (3/10 vs. Padres, 3/12 vs. Diamondbacks, 3/13 vs. Rangers 3/15 vs. White Sox, 3/21 vs. Giants), the Indians Radio Network will also carry twenty games and nine will be made available exclusively on Indians.com
- The Indians have come to terms with free agents INF Jose Lopez and OF Felix Pie (pronounced pee-ay). Neither is added to the 40-man roster, but both will be invited to major league spring training.
Lopez, 28, carries a career Major League batting average of .263 (947-3605) with 201 doubles, 11 triples, 88 home runs and 452 RBI in 955 games with Seattle, Colorado and Florida. He was Seattle’s everyday second baseman from 2006-10, appearing in at least 149 games in each of those five seasons and was a 2006 American League All-Star. Lopez finished 3rd in the AL in hits in 2008 (191) and in 2009 he was tied for 11th in the league in doubles (42, with Asdrubal Cabrera) and tied for 16th in RBI (96).
Pie, 26, has a five-year career Major League batting average of .249 (240-964) with 44 doubles, 13 triples, 17 homers and 97 RBI in 398 games with the Baltimore Orioles and Chicago Cubs since 2007. His best season came in 2009 with Baltimore after being acquired from the Cubs that off-season, hitting .266 (67-252) with 10 2B, 3 3B, 9HR & 29RBI in 101 games (.763OPS). He spent most of the 2011 season in the Major Leagues with 85 games played for the Orioles before concluding the season in Triple-A Norfolk.
- The Indians and Padres completed a trade on Friday, with Cleveland acquiring OF Aaron Cunningham for RHP Cory Burns.
Cunningham, 25, split the 2011 season between Triple-A Tucson and San Diego. At Tucson, he hit .329 (112-340) with 34 doubles, 4 triples, 9 home runs and 63 RBI in 87 games (.398OBP/.532SLG/.930OPS). With the Padres he hit .178 (16-90) with 6 2B, 3HR & 9RBI in 52 games. He hit .227 (10-44) w/2HR & 4RBI in 23 games away from Petco Park.
Burns was Cleveland’s 8th round draft pick in 2009 and set the Akron Aeros franchise record for saves in 2011 before joining the Clippers in the post-season.
To make room on the 40-man roster, the Indians designated RHP Josh Judy for assignment. Judy must clear waivers to remain in the organization.
I’ll have more on this trade and Josh Judy soon.
- The Clippers ticket office has unveiled six-game mini plans! Choose one of these options for just $50 for adults, $35 youth/seniors (reserve seating only):
(run the bases after each game!)
Call the office at 614-462-5250 to order (this offer is only valid by phone)
Check out the Huntington Park seating chart.
- Finish your holiday shopping at the Clippers Cargo Shop!
Clippers Gift Certificates are also available in $5 and $10 increments.
Have a great weekend!