I get the sense the Aeros are driving a lot of fans crazy these days. At least they've been driving me crazy for a while now.
Granted, ups and downs are a part of every season. I used to have a manager in Triple-A Columbus named Trey Hillman who used say to me all the time, "Stephanie, this is a marathon, not a sprint. Relax.''
I do try to be patient. But my patience has run thin lately. Aside from a recent 10-game stretch in which the Aeros went 8-2, the team has not looked very good for a nearly two months now.
A part of the reasdon is that Akron keeps losing its best players to Triple-A (SS Asdrubal Cabrera, OF Brian Barton, P Aaron Laffey) like it does every year.
But instead of getting Class-A Kinston's top players in return (1B Matt Whitney, 3B Wes Hodges, P's Kevin Dixon, Ryan Edell and James Deters), the Aeros have been given subs and forced to play the remainder of the season with several players playing out of position.
It's not exactly the formula for success, and it's very frustrating.
And when I'm really moody, I think maybe the Indians just want Kinston to win this season and just don't care much about Akron. But a good scout friend of mine insists the lack of movement doesn't have as much to do with wanting one team to win over another as it does setting up the entire system (majors to minors) for proper movement in the next year or two.
But why wait till next year?
The answer was complicated. But his premise that there's much more thought put into this than we like to think at times is no doubt true. The Indians know what they're doing, even if it drives us all crazy at different levels in the minors in the meantime.
However, if the Aeros aren't careful, they could easily find themselves out of the race within a week with Erie playing well and the Aeros headed there for a pivotal three-game matchup Monday through Wednesday.
With the current state of the team, I don't know how far the team would make it in a playoff run. But it would at least be nice to get a chance to find out.