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Cleveland Indians

3-27-09 Morning Roundup

By jcfortun Published: March 27, 2009

Scott Lewis didn't exactly make the Indians feel comfortable about their decision to make him the fourth starter.

A day after being publicly announced as such, Lewis was shellacked by the Los Angeles Angels.

Eight hits and five runs in three innings. Three of the runs came via long ball when Bobby Abreu, Vladimir Guerrero and Torii Hunter went back-to-back-to back in the third inning.

Abreu and Guerrero both hit opposite field shots. Hunter destroyed a flat curveball, nearly killing a beer vendor in left field during the process.

The PD's Terry Pluto thinks out loud about Lewis, Jeremy Sowers and Aaron Laffey. All finesse lefties who are prone to such beatdowns if they don't keep their pitches down.

Sheldon Ocker skipped over Lewis (he wrote about him in his notebook posted below) and wrote about what Sowers needs to do to return from the minor leagues.

Anthony Castrovince profiled fifth starter Anthony Reyes.

Economically speaking

The Indians told staff ace Cliff Lee yesterday they are not ready to negotiate a contract extension due to the struggling economy, according to the Plain Dealer.

Lee will make $5.75 million this season and the Indians hold a $9 million option for 2010.

Military man?

Indians starting rightfielder Shin-Soo Choo is waiting to hear if he will have to return to his native South Korea sometime in the future to fulfill his military service time, according to's Anthony Castrovince.

All able-bodied Korean men are required to serve two years in the military before the age of 30, Choo is now 26.

Members of South Korea's 2006 World Baseball Classic team were given exemptions. Choo, the only professional player on the 2009 team, is hoping he can receive an exemption as well.

Hafner's struggles

Terry Pluto's notebook had this written today:

The box score shows Travis Hafner hit his second double (and extra-base hit) of the spring. But it was an opposite-field bloop. He also had a looping single to center. The wind made it rough on the outfielders. But until he begins to pull the ball with authority, it's hard to make any big assumptions about him having an impact year. The Indians are wise to play him as much as possible to see if he can regain his timing. There are nine games left, so no reason to jump to any major conclusions yet.

I'll take that a step further. Hafner could not get around on the ball at all yesterday. All of his foul balls were to the left side. His bloop double down the leftfield line is an out had the wind not been whipping as it was.

For some odd reason the Angels still played the shift, moving all its infielders to the right side. Until Hafner shows he can turn on anything, it will just allow his dink and dunk hits to fall into left field.

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