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Cleveland Indians Acquire Right-Handed Bat: A Fan’s Reaction
Canzler spent the 2011 season at Tampa Bay's Class AAA club, where he batted .314 with 40 doubles, 18 home runs, and 83 RBIs, stats which earned the hitter the International League's MVP Award, reports The Plain Dealer Indians beat reporter Paul Haynes. All in all, Russ Canzler holds the potential to greatly benefit the Cleveland Indians.
Two hot talking points for the Tribe throughout the offseason include the need for a right-handed bat and who will play first base come April. Heading into the 2012 season, the Cleveland Indians' projected lineup features six left-handed hitters and two switch hitters. A solid right-handed bat will give the team some welcomed variety. First base seems the most logical place to address this issue, as last year's first-baseman, Matt Laporta, will fight for his spot on the 2012 ballclub. Canzler plays first base, as well as third base, right field, and left field.
Personally, I found the coverage from Paul Hoynes and Cleveland Indians MLB website reporter Jordan Bastian potentially revealing. Bastian introduces Russ Canzler as a first baseman who happens to play other positions. On the other hand, Hoynes makes Canzler seem versatile like a utility player. While this may seem like semantics, the difference indicates what role on the Indians the acquired player will compete for—first base or bench player.
Despite the potential benefits Russ Canzler can bring the Cleveland Indians, I believe the acquisition adds new questions to an already questionable ballclub. Between the team's youth and injury prone veterans, the Cleveland Indians' offense fails to provide a serious threat. Center fielder Grady Sizemore and designated hitter Travis Hafner, who add an impactful presence to the Tribe lineup, have piled up more medicals records over the past few years than MLB stats. You can't help but wonder if shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, who experienced a career season in 2011, can supply a repeat performance in 2012. Russ Canzler joins potential third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall as unproven talent on the major keague level.
Simply put, the Indians still lack the stability needed to guarantee contention.
Zachary Fenell fell in love with the Cleveland Indians during the 1995 season when the Tribe powered their way to the organization's first World Series appearance since 1954. While the Indians lost some lure since the 1990s you will still find Zachary watching the games on TV, listening to them on the radio, or best yet taking in a game from the stands at Progressive Field.
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