Jack Torry offered his spring assessment of the Indians last Friday and his outlook is pretty favorable. Noting the strength of Kansas City and Detroit, Jack said he thought the Indians’ defense had improved measurably over last year and that this together with the Indians’ bullpen was enough to take them to the division championship – barring injuries.
The Dolans have done a good job running the team, according to Jack, and he said that Mark Shapiro and Chris Antonetti are as smart as any managers in baseball. “Under the Dolans, the Indians have had a plan and they stick to it,” Jack told Club members at the National Press Club. “If the Indians’ defense had been as good last year as it should be this season, they would have won the division,” he said. He noted that the American Central Division is as tough a division as there is in baseball.
Jack is the author of the 1995 Endless Summers, The Fall and Rise of the Cleveland Indians. In his opinion, the Indians have been good at scouting and developing younger players and have a strong farm organization. He believes that over the long term these qualities will do well for the team, especially against the Tigers, which seem bent on putting so much of their resources into winning a World Series as quickly as possible.
According to Sports Illustrated, however, the Tigers will fall short again this year. For World Series champions in 2015, the magazine chose the Indians – over the Washington Nationals.