The slow start has become something of a tradition for Terry Francona and the Indians.
Despite Francona’s wild success in Cleveland during his tenure, the opening month has always been something that the team looks back at during the final months.
A weak final stretch against divisional opponents had the Indians watch as the Minnesota Twins won the division for the first time since 2010. Cleveland has had a stranglehold on the division title as 2019 was the first year that a team not from Cleveland won the division.
The Tribe was primed to start their season in what appeared to be a cold climate, March 23rd was set to be only the second time that Cleveland hosted an opening day in March and the 23rd would have been the earliest.
With the suggestion of play in Arizona, this can only help the Indians as they will bypass the slow start that has become evident in recent years due to the brutal weather. Even if Cleveland starts their season at Progressive Field, it won’t be anytime soon and will be during the dog days of summer.
With a shortened season, the experience that many of these players have together will become more valuable as the prospect of playing 100 games shaves off 62 games.
The shortened season has not come with many details, such as the numbers of games specifically and how those games would come about. It is likely that at least a handful of the games would come against American League Central foes.
Cleveland still plays amongst two of the worst teams in all of baseball, Detroit and Kansas City, so they can almost count on those wins. The Minnesota and Chicago matchups will be hard-fought but the Indians have a chance every time in divisional action.
Securing a playoff spot after missing out in the waning moments of the season could also go a long way in retaining superstar Francisco Lindor. Lindor has made multiple statements concerning staying in Cleveland and that he intends to win a championship in Cleveland.
While all of this is up in the air, maybe all of this will help Cleveland.