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Cleveland Indians ranked 16th best system, Francisco Lindor the No. 6 prospect per ESPN’s Keith Law

By Ryan Lewis Published: January 29, 2015

ESPN’s Keith Law came out with his annual system and prospect rankings this week, and the Indians, for the most part, are in the middle of the road in baseball.

As a minor league system, Law ranked the Indians 16th, which was fourth in the division (although only Minnesota, at No. 2, was in the top 10). Detroit, meanwhile, is ranked as having the worst system in the league.

Law states that the Indians had “perhaps my favorite 2014 draft class,” something that was needed after some of the team’s top-10 prospects struggled last season.

Individually, shortstop Francisco Lindor is still, of course, the star of the system, coming in at No. 6 on Law’s top 100 prospects. Baseball is full of high-ceiling shortstops in the minors right now, so Lindor is still only the third-best shortstop on the list and one of four in the top-7 prospects overall. Law writes, however, that Lindor is the strongest bet to hit and stay at his position in the major leagues.

He also goes into detail on Lindor’s improved hitting against left-handed pitching in 2014, his good strike-out rate, his solid on-base percentage and his young age for being at the Triple-A level.

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Indians invite seven players to spring training; Francisco Lindor, James Ramsey among them

By Ryan Lewis Published: January 27, 2015

The Indians on Tuesday extended non-roster spring training invites to seven players, including shortstop Francisco Lindor and outfielders James Ramsey and Tyler Naquin.

Lindor, 21, is the clear No. 1 prospect in the system, as ranked by Baseball America, and Baseball Prospectus. Last season he hit a combined. 276 between Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus and showed some speed, stealing 28 bases.

His real value, in large part, rests with his glove and fielding ability, where he projects to be a perennial Gold Glove winner.

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Giovanny Urshela, Ryan Merritt win Indians organizational awards as top minor leaguers in 2014

By Ryan Lewis Published: January 27, 2015

Giovanny Urshela and Ryan Merritt were named the top position player and pitcher, respectively, in the Indians' minor league system for the 2014 season, the team announced Monday.

Urshela, the Lou Boudreau Award winner, batted a combined .280 between Double-A Akron and Triple-A Columbus last year with 18 home runs and 84 RBI. He got off to a hot start with the RubberDucks at third base, hitting .300 with five home runs, nine doubles and 19 RBI in only 24 games before being promoted to Columbus. He also led all Indians minor leaguers with 78 runs scored during the season.

Merritt, the Bob Feller Award recipient, had a 2.58 ERA, 127 strikeouts and a 0.95 WHIP in 160.1 innings at Single-A Carolina. He, a 22-year-old lefty, stands a good chance of finding his way to Akron in 2015.

Urshela and Merritt were both added to the team's 40-man roster in November. 

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Cleveland Indians announce 33-game spring training schedule

By Dan Kadar Published: January 14, 2015

Maybe this will help you feel a little bit warmer today. The Cleveland Indians have released their 2015 spring trainining schedule.

The team has 33 games scheduled with the first game coming against the Cincinnati Reds on March 3.

Fifteen of the spring training games will be broadcast on the radio, according to a release by the team. Ten will be on WTAM (1100-AM), three will be on 99x (99.1-FM) and the other two on WMMS (100.7-FM).

Eight of the games will air on SportsTime Ohio.

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