A double play ground ball is hit to second, this should be a routine play. Well, that hasn’t been the case for Cleveland Indians so far this season. The careless errors the Indians have been committing, have not only been costing them runs, but games. The Indians have given 24 outs already this season and has been an immense part of their below .500 record. They rank last in the AL in errors also in fielding percentage with .975. An example was just last night against the Angels. Justin Masterson gave an admirable effort last night, but in the 8th inning our highest paid player, Nick Swisher botched a ground ball and opened up a 3 run inning that would give the Angels the lead. If Swisher didn’t have his 4th error of the season (which ranks 2nd on the team with Gomes leading with 6 errors,) chances are Axford would of been on the hill to earn his league leading 9th save on the season.
Advanced saber metrics really show just how poor the Cleveland defense really is. Nick Swisher who the highest payed player on the Indians has a DWAR of -0.6. DWAR measures the defense wins above replacement, in other words it is used to show how much better a player is than what a team would typically have to replace that player. Jason Kipnis has a -0.2 DAWR. Compared to the league leader currently, Alex Gordon with a 1.0 DWAR. They also have range factor, which is different from fielding percentage in that it attempts to determine a fielding player’s true contribution to the defense of a team based on his position. Asdrubal Cabrera was a 9.84 RF, compared to Pedro Florimon with a 4.86. It’s just unacceptable play by a major leaguer.
Errors are inevitable in baseball, but it comes to a point where it’s getting excessive. An error every once in a while is going to happen, but the Indians amount is inexcusable. If the Indians want to make the post-season let alone stay above .500, they need to clean up their act and start playing like major leaguers.