Monday, March 24, 2008

We won't be Fultzed again


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Those of you who drafted Aaron Fultz as the sleeper lefty for you fantasy team, time to pull the plug.

The Tribe realized it was plug-pulling time today, telling the lefty reliever he would not make the 25-man roster.

They will either eat his $1.5 million salary or designate and trade him.

Fultz was somewhat useful as a lefty out of the pen in the early part of last season, until a pulled muscle in his rib cage kept him out of action for five weeks. After that he was, at best, unreliable. (I'm in a mood to be kind).

This spring he was just plain awful.

I'm fine with the decision to cut Fultz.

It's the decision on how to replace him that I'm not sure about.

Craig Breslow, put on waivers by the Red Sox and picked up by the Tribe yesterday, is expected to be handed a spot on the roster - primarily because he is left-handed.

He's already 27 and has had only two cups of coffee in the majors.

The Tribe hasn't said Breslow will make the club for sure, but you don't pick up a guy in the last week of spring training with no minor league options left, and then create a hole in your bullpen, unless you're planning to hand the job to the guy you just picked up.

I can't comment with any degree of credibility on Breslow, since I know virtually nothing about him beyond what the numbers tell us.

Breslow went 2-3 with a 4.06 ERA in 49 games for Triple-A Pawtucket last year. He struck out 73 and walked 25 in 68 2/3 innings pitched.

I can say this. I work with lots of Red Sox fans and they all snickered when mentioning the Tribe's pickup of Breslow.

I guess we'll find out soon enough.

The final spot in the pen will go to Tom Mastny, Scott Elarton or Jorge Julio.

My money is on Julio for his back-of-the pen experience.

Meanwhile, the Tribe did make a final decision on its starting rotation.

Cliff Lee - as expected - took the fifth spot, with Aaron Laffey and Jeremy Sowers headed for Buffalo.

Still, Mark Shapiro remains impressed with Laffey:

"When he came into camp this year, it was the first time he came in with expectations and people knowing who he was. It took him a while to get comfortable with that. As he got comfortable in camp, he was the same guy, just throwing ground balls, relying on his strengths and competitiveness."

Ditto Jeremy Sowers:

"It was as good an arm strength as we've seen. His command of his secondary pitches needs to keep getting better. If it does, we have a guy who can definitely impact our big league rotation this year. I'm really excited about where Jeremy is right now."

The good news is the Tribe is at least seven-deep in starters, while the big bashers from Motown are having trouble finding five guys to throw out there.


Anonymous said...

moose said

now if they would dump delucci or micheals that would make me happy

Ron Vallo said...

give it 'til about Mother's Day

Anonymous said...

elarton to buffalo