The Cleveland Indians hold first place in the AL Central. Yes, the Indians. I will admit, I’m impressed. I think many are. I also think, this is a feel good story for baseball and is definitely worth writing about. Cleveland is not the happiest of sports towns. At least I’m assuming. When you have the Browns, the Indians, and those Cavaliers, what’s there to celebrate?
Cleveland, from this New Yorker’s perspective, seems to be a bad joke when it comes to sports. Art Shell ups and move the Browns to Baltimore. Lebron James ups and moves his talents to Miami. And for a number of years, the Indians were, well the Indians.
However this season its different. The Tribe is in first. They seem to be hitting well. They are driving in runs. Most importantly they are 6 games over .500.
Granted, the Twins are struggling. The White Sox are getting off to a dreadfully slow start in 2011. But that other small market team, the Kansas City Royals are playing well.
I think this is good for baseball. For the fans in Cleveland it gives them something to look forward to. This is a feel good story from the sports world. Not to mention, this makes the AL Central worth watching. Can they hold onto first? Will the White Sox turn it around? Will the Royals keep up their play? And don’t forget about Minnesota.
In the end, the Indians are demonstrating you don’t need a dugout full of household names and a $200 million payroll (the Indians are 26th out of 30 teams with just over $48 million in player salaries.)
Again, we aren’t even in May yet, but there seems to be promise in Ohio.
Agree? Disagree? Let me know what you think!
All statistical data from espn.go.com.