Leo: Groundhogs and Big Trucks
Happy Groundhog Day!
Despite this oh so fantasic holiday, I’m here to tell you that the first sign spring is near has nothing to do with a groundhog. It does however have everything to do with an 18-wheeler, the Cleveland Indians equipment truck to be exact, which leaves for Goodyear on Friday.
Pitchers and catchers report on February 20th and shortly after that we’ll be watching highlights and reading box scores from the Cactus League. It really is a great time of the year, when the prospect of warm sunshine and a winning baseball season fill our hearts and minds.
I get goose bumps just thinking about it, don’t you?
* As the season nears, the Indians are attempting to put the finishing touches on their arbitration situation. Five of the seven arbitration-eligible players are signed, leaving just Asdrubal Cabrera and Rafael Perez. However, it looks like the Tribe may be headed in front of the arbiter for the first time since 1991. Rafael Perez is reportedly asking for $2.2 million and the Indians are offering $1.6 million while Asdrubal Cabrera is reportedly asking for $5.25 million while the club is offering $3.75 million. That’s a substantial difference and it’s likely that an agreement won’t be reached before the hearing dates, which began Wednesday and last for three weeks.
Why go, Lugo?
It appears now the Julio Lugo will NOT be joining the Indians after all. The 36 year-old agreed to a minor league contract almost two weeks ago, but reports say the deal is now off. Some have speculated that Lugo failed his physical, but the club has not commented on it. Indians beat writer Jordan Bastian has more insight on the Lugo fallout and the contract specifics for some recent Cleveland signings.
One more mouth to feed…
The Clippers roster will expand from 24 to 25 players starting this season because of recent legislation passed by the MLB general managers. The group voted to add one player to maximum roster limit for all Double-A and Triple-A clubs. The minor league managers will surely be very happy to have an extra bullpen arm or a bench player to use late in games. This change will benefit National League affiliates who do not use a designated hitter when playing against other NL affiliated teams. Bring on the double-switches!
Thanks, but no thanks.
Free agent pitcher Roy Oswalt has reportedly told the Indians and Blue Jays that he is not interested in signing with them. Oswalt, 34, may be leaning towards a deal with either St. Louis or Texas. The right-hander will be entering his 12th Major League season, carrying a 159-93 record and 3.21 ERA over 326 starts with Houston and Philadelphia. He is a three-time All Star.
The Biggest Little City in the World
The International League and Pacific Coast League each announced that Reno, Nevada will host the 2013 Triple-A All-Star Game. This season’s game is being held in Buffalo. One of the most common questions I’ve received is “When will the Clippers host the All-Star Game?” The answer is that I don’t know, but two leagues alternate hosts, so it will be back in an International League park in 2014.
Meanwhile, Durham is hosting this year’s Triple-A National Championship, which now also rotates location each season like the Super Bowl. It’s up for grabs again for 2013.
The season is approaching quickly the Clippers Cargo Shop is featuring 23 brand new hats! Check them out here.
You can get a Clippers partial season ticket plan for as low as $235! Talk a look at all the options here.
Columbus Alive has started its voting for the “Best of Columbus”. Take this survey and vote for the Clippers as the best of the best!
There are only 63 days until the Clippers host Louisville on Opening Night! Check out the 2012 schedule!
That’s all for today, keep coming back!