Cleveland Indians: Future of Asdrubal Cabrera in Cleveland

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Updated: March 17, 2014

Cleveland Indians shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera’s future with the ball club seems bleak, but he is one of the most vital pieces to the team this season. Bashed for his recent play and what seems a lack of interest, if he can find his ways of old, he can definitely help the Tribe get back in the MLB Playoffs in 2014.

Cabrera will not be with the team in 2015, as that is pretty much signed, sealed and delivered. Young prospect, and 2011 first-round pick Fransisco Lindor, is almost ready to take over the reins at short. However, it is this season that matters. It is time for Cabrera to face the music, rise to the occasion and go to bat for his team and his future.

Cabrera started out as a very promising MLB shortstop with solid defense and a good bat from both sides of the plate. He has become a very streaky hitter, often swinging for the fences opposed to hitting for average.

Many have been calling for the organization to trade Cabrera. The reason this can’t happen yet is because his value has been shrinking. Trade him for what is the question that lies. This is why he is so vital to the team this year.

First, if he plays well, everyone knows the type of contributions he can bring to the team. Second, if he plays well his value will climb and then at the trade deadline could be dealt for a key piece that could really push this team into a legitimate playoff run.

However, this can’t happen without the development of Lindor. If Lindor is ready to go as a mid-season call up, it might be time for Cabrera to pack his bags. If Lindor is not ready, then Cabrera will most likely be staying with the club with the Tribe knowing he will be gone in the offseason.

Everything will hinder on where the Indians  are in the standings. If Lindor is ready, it makes Cabrera one of the expendable players at the deadline to get a key piece. If the Indians are slumping, Cabrera will be traded. If Lindor is not ready and the team is in contention, Cabrera will stay and close out the year.

Cabrera’s bat will be the key this year. If he can hit even just .275 he will contribute a great deal to the success of the Indians this season. However, as mentioned before, he has to hit for average and stop trying to hit for power. His home runs will come, but when he starts noticeably trying to hit them is when he struggles.

All of Terry Francona’s players seem to have a role. His championship teams with the Boston Red Sox and now last year’s Indians. Players have to play their part for the team to be successful. Most would look at Jason Giambi’s statistics last season and laugh, but the truth is that he played his role and did what he needed to do when he was asked.

The rest of the team, especially players like Carbrera, need to buy into this. Even with what many are saying is a decline in the pitching staff this year, this Tribe team can do some serious damage in the American League Central Division.

Cabrera will have a major role during this season, and should contribute enough to push the Tribe back in the playoffs. As for his future after this season? That remains to be seen, but it is highly unlikely he will be back with the club at shortstop.

There is the potential to move him to third base once Lindor is ready and gets the nod. However, Cabrera would have to accept that move, which doesn’t seem likely. The New York Yankees seem like the best fit for Cabrera after this season, especially with Derek Jeter announcing his last year.

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