Monday, December 31, 2018

Goodbye Dr. Smooth

hello all and Happy New Year's Eve. as we're about to close the book on 2018, the time has come for me to finally say my goodbye to Michael Brantley. i don't want to, but i have to. i've written several goodbye blogs to former Cleveland Indians players in the past after they were traded or signed with another team as free agents, yet none were ever as hard for me to compose as this one. i'm still trying to accept the reality of how different everything's going to be next year and i'm simply not okay with it.๐Ÿ˜ญ

if you don't already know, Michael officially signed a two-year, $32 million deal with the Houston Astros on December 19. he parted ways with the Indians following a 10-year tenure because they weren't in a position to retain him. that was made clear five days after the World Series ended, on November 2, when they didn't even extend a one-year, $17.9 million qualifying offer to Michael, so he entered into free agency for the first time in his career. and it led him to the 'Stros.

Friday, December 28, 2018

Brantley's Career Situational #s & Statistics as an Indian

hi there, Brantley fans! i hope you had a good Christmas๐ŸŽ„ if that's a holiday you recognize and celebrate. i joked that Santa Claus delivered Tribe fans' present to Houston by mistake and now it's gonna be stuck there for the next two years...๐Ÿ˜ž sad, but true.

anyway, i'm back with the third and final piece of the Michael Brantley's career numbers with the Cleveland Indians series. this one is full of situational statistics--everyone's favorite, am i right? the layout of this blog mirrors that of my usual situational posts. here you will find Michael's batting averages and other numbers against right-handed and left-handing pitching, at home and on the road, with runners in scoring position, with runners on base, with the bases loaded, and with the bases empty. other stats included are his WAR, wRC+, BsR, UZR, and DRS. i also listed out Michael's numbers versus each AL Central Division team and every National League team he played against in his 10-year career. some of Michael's offensive league rankings and defensive league rankings have been archived as well. there's more miscellaneous stuff too, namely his season career highs, team leads, K rate, the types of outs he hit into, his best hitting streaks, and historical moments with the Indians. besides all that, i decided to add a few things i don't ordinarily highlight, those being

Monday, December 24, 2018

Brantley's Career Batting Order Position & LF/CF/PH/DH #s as an Indian

hello again, Brantley fans! this is the second blog in my series analyzing Michael Brantley's career numbers and stats from his 10 years as a Cleveland Indian. it consists of his batting order position numbers, along with his left field, center field, PH, DH, PH for DH, and PR numbers. the format is the same as my typical BOP wrap up blogs, though keen-eyed readers will be quick to spot that there are a few changes.

the thing is, as i mentioned in my previous post, from 2009-2011, i did not document and personally calculate Michael's game stats during his first 214 games in the majors. i very recently researched back through those to complete this. and again, my writing and coverage of Michael's numbers expanded as time went by, so there are certain things that i've been keeping track of in his last few campaigns that i didn't take notes on in the early days even when i was documenting his stats. therefore, i was unable to get an accurate total count for various data and, unfortunately, the following had to eliminated from this blog:
--first at bat hits,
--runners left on base,
--which specific bases Michael stole and which specific bases

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Brantley's Career Game-by-Game Numbers & Notes as an Indian

hey, Brantley fans! after much debate, i decided to compile a trio of posts featuring Michael's numbers and statistics from his 10 years as a Cleveland Indian before he starts adding onto his MLB career stats with numbers from his new team, the Houston Astros.

the first installment of my three-part series is his game-by-game numbers and notes. if you're a long-time reader of mine and have followed along with my end of the season wrap up blogs, then you're already familiar with this and how it's gonna go. if not, well, it should be easy enough to pick up on because i section off and divide everything for clarity.

however, in order to make this blog complete, i had to go back and research Michael's first 214 games in the majors due to the fact that i did not personally document those stats from his early years between 2009-2011. also, i didn't get into all the specifics of Michael's numbers when i did begin to keep track of them, so there are some notes and other information that's not included, mainly around the 2012-2013 years of his career. as my writing evolved, so did my notekeeping and you'll discover that once i get to Michael's more recent campaigns. nonetheless, the game lines won't necessarily be

Monday, December 17, 2018

Brantley News and Rumors from December 2018

hi there, Brantley fans. the wait is over and the rumor mill about Michael Brantley is now closed. if you haven't heard yet, earlier this evening, on December 17, Michael left the free agent market when he made the decision to continue his baseball career as a member of the Houston Astros.๐Ÿ˜ฎ he's agreed to a straight two-year, $32 million deal and once he takes his physical tomorrow, it will be official. Cleveland fans are weeping, none more than me.๐Ÿ˜ญ

but before Michael gave approval to this new contract with Houston, there was a lot of speculation and rumors floating around this month and i've got them all right here for you now.

and in case you missed the rumors and reports from November, or just want to re-visit where Michael was said to potentially go last month, please refer back to this blog: Brantley News and Rumors from November 2018.

December 1: in Paul Hoynes' Hey, Hoynsie on, David of St. Augustine, Florida, wanted to know how the Indians were going to solve the Yandy Diaz, Jose Ramirez, and Jason Kipnis problem. and he did not want to hear that Kipnis would play left field. sadly for David, Hoynsie told him what he didn't want to hear, with his solution being

Brantley Agrees to Two-Year, $32 Million Deal with Houston Astros

this is a sad day for Tribe fans, but a good day for Brantley fans. and if you're both like i am, then i'm sure you're very torn. after being with the Cleveland Indians for 10 years, he is no longer ours. today, on December 17, it was announced that Michael Brantley has agreed to a two-year, $32 million deal with the Houston Astros.

photo courtesy of @MLB on twitter

Ken Rosenthal was the first to reveal a deal was close at 6:47 pm ET. Jeff Passan disclosed that Michael had been discussing two-year deals with a vesting third-year option, according to sources, before he reported the deal was a straight two-year deal with no options at 7 pm ET. evidently, there is "still some work for it to be official, but

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Brantley Nominated For 2018 Frank Gibbons-Steve Olin Good Guy Award

what's up, Brantley fans? i've got a quick post for you because today, on December 2, it was publicized that Michael had been nominated for the 2018 Frank Gibbons-Steve Olin Good Guy Award. unfortunately, he didn't win. instead, Cleveland's franchise leader in saves, former Indians closer/now free agent Cody Allen was named the winner of this annual award for his assistance off the field. congrats, Cody!๐Ÿ‘

the Good Guy Award has been given out by the Cleveland chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America since 1968. it is bestowed upon the Indians' player, coach, manager, or team employee who understands the media's job when it comes to covering a baseball team, per Paul Hoynes' article on more specifically, the recipients of this honor are known for always being accommodating and reliable with the local media, as well as accountable, approachable, and insightful whether after having a good game or bad game. (source: Anthony Castrovince's article.) that absolutely described Allen this year, as he never shied away from reporters when he was going through tough times. his selection was well-deserved.๐Ÿ‘

the naming of this particular award comes from columnist Frank Gibbons, who

Friday, November 30, 2018

Brantley News and Rumors from November 2018

hey, Brantley fans. the news and rumors about Michael sure added up this month. i didn't anticipate this blog being as long as it is because, thanks to a reporter's suggestion that Michael could sign a new contract before Thanksgiving, i thought a deal would be done by now. alas, Michael is still on the free agent market and on a lot of teams' radars.

between the change in agencies, not getting a qualifying offer from the Indians, and being a so-called best fit for several ballclubs, there was quite a bit going on in November. and of course i had many opinions about the rumors, too. so let's just jump right into it!

November 1: there is now a Michael Brantley Rumors page on dedicated to all the latest predictions and such. it again noted that Sports Illustrated thinks Michael will go to the St. Louis Cardinals despite his "lengthy injury history." (well that's not exactly true.) that said, Michael would likely have to play right field with the Cards due to their other outfield spots already being occupied. Michael's never played one game in right in either the majors or minors, so i don't know if that's really a realistic projection.

Jon Heyman's article for contained an expert's guess that

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Brantley Wins Players Choice Awards' 2018 AL Comeback Player of the Year Award!

don't call it a comeback! wait... yes, do! hey there, Brantley fans, i have great news! remember on October 16, when Michael Brantley was named a finalist for the Players Choice Awards' 2018 AL Comeback Player of the Year? well tonight, on November 27, the winner was finally revealed, live from the Four Seasons in Dallas, Texas, and... Michael won the PCA for 2018 American League Comeback Player of the Year!!! congratulations, Brant!!!๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘Š๐Ÿ˜€

photo courtesy of

Michael will now receive a $20,000 grant from

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Analyzing the Tribe's 2018 Season + Postseason

hey, Tribe fans. how ya doing? i'm truly sorry for the delay with this blog, but with all the Michael Brantley news that came out so early during this offseason, i didn't have as much time to dedicate to working on this as i usually do. my apologies.

it's already been a little over five weeks since the Cleveland Indians' offseason began on October 8, after what turned out to be a quick postseason appearance. their 91-71 record was the worst of all American League playoff teams and that's part of the reason they were considered underdogs. the Tribe officially won the AL Central Division on September 15, but they really had it wrapped up after like the first month of the season. not one divisional team presented serious competition for this Indians squad and now many are speculating that that could actually have been why the Indians got swept right out of the American League Division Series against the Houston Astros. angry fans also pointed fingers at manager Terry Francona and some of his decisions, including leaving a pitcher in the game for too long, not leaving a pitcher in long enough, and calling the wrong relief pitcher out of the bullpen at specific times. and that's to say nothing of the lack of hitting in the series, which the hitting coach is getting much of the blame for. whoever you want to be mad at, well, your feelings are justified. if the Indians continue to own their division each year, but keep losing in the playoffs, or worse keep getting knocked out of every ALDS, how can anyone be content with that? i get it and i feel the same.

so who wants to go back and