The Cleveland Indians have released 20-year old righty swinging 3B/SS Grofi Cruz. Cruz played in 7 games in Rookie+A-ball for the Tribe this year and he was 4 for 21 (.190 avg, .451 OPS) with 3 runs scored, 0 homers and 2 RBIs. Cruz played in 127 games in his first four years in the minors and he is 102 of 460 (.222 avg, .530 OPS) with 34 runs scored, 0 homers, 38 RBIs and 4 stolen bases. This is not much of a loss for the Tribe, as Cruz didn’t show much for them.
The Cleveland Indians have dealt 30-year old lefty reliever Ross Detwiler to the A’s for cash considerations. Detwiler pitched in 7 games (0 starts) for the Tribe this year and he was 0-0 with a 5.79 ERA and a 1.50 WHIP. He has now pitched in 180 games (76 starts) in his first 9 years in the show and he is 21-37 with 1 save, a 4.21 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP. This is not much of a loss for the Tribe, as Detwiler did not pitch well for them this year.
When the Cleveland Indians signed 34-year old righty swinging 1B Mike Napoli over the winter, they were hoping that he would hit some homers and be an improvement defensively over Carlos Santana at 1B. He has done both of those things so far this year for the Tribe. Napoli has played in 82 games for the Indians so far this year and he is 76 of 313 (.243 avg, .793 OPS) with 54 runs scored, 18 homers, 61 RBIs and 1 stolen base. He has whiffed 119 times so far this year, but the Tribe is OK with that as long as he keeps hitting a lot of homers and piles up the RBIs. Napoli leads the Indians in RBIs (61) and he is second on the team in both runs scored (54) and homers (18). Since May 1st, Napoli has played in 62 games for the Tribe in which he is 60 for 235 (.255 avg) with 42 runs scored, 14 homers and 50 RBIs. The Tribe hope Napoli keeps up the good work in the second half of the 2016 season!
The Cleveland Indians have called up 24-year old righty swinging SS Erik Gonzalez. Gonzalez came into this season as the Indians’ #12 prospect according to Baseball America. Gonzalez has played in 81 games in AAA-ball for the Indians so far this year and he is 100 of 338 (.296 avg, .748 OPS) with 46 runs scored, 6 homers, 39 RBIs and 9 stolen bases. Gonzalez has now played in 681 games in his first six years in the minors and he is 733 of 2,679 (.274 avg, .705 OPS) with 385 runs scored, 33 homers, 332 RBIs and 96 stolen bases. To make room on the roster for Gonzalez, the Indians have sent 26-year old righty reliever T.J. House to AAA. House has pitched in 4 games (0 starts) for the Indians so far this year and he is 0-0 with a 3.38 ERA and a 2.25 WHIP. House gave up 6 hits and whiffed 2 batters in his first 2 2/3 innings pitched so far this year for the Tribe. House has now pitched in 27 games (22 starts) in his first three years with the Tribe and he is 5-7 with a 4.44 ERA and a 1.48 WHIP.
24-year old righty reliever Ben Heller of the Cleveland Indians has been lights out in the minors so far this year. Heller has pitched in 36 games (0 starts) in AA+AAA-ball so far this year and he is 3-1 with 11 saves, a 1.47 ERA and a 0.82 WHIP. Heller has given up only 18 hits and 12 walks while whiffing 43 batters in his first 36 2/3 innings so far this year. Heller has now pitched in 143 games (1 start) in his first four years in the minors and he is 9-7 with 30 saves, a 2.74 ERA and a 1.11 WHIP. He could make his Major League debut for the Indians later this year, or he could be trade bait at the deadline later this month.