Happy Fourth of July weekend everyone. Have the safest of holidays.
The Tribe is streaking, but how sustainable is it?
The Cleveland Indians have been playing in the shadow of the Cleveland Cavaliers. It's hard not to play in the shadow of LeBron James when you play in the same city, even if you play a different sport. Now that the parade is over and most of the confetti has been cleaned up, the Indians are showing the world just how insanely great they are playing. Even as the Indians are a marvel to watch right now, there's something completely ordinary about how they're winning as well.
This isn't to take away from the performances of the Tribe's best players. Francisco Lindor is doing amazing things in the field and at the plate. The Indians' starting pitching has been pretty phenomenal as well, of course. I guess the thing that stands out about this Indians team to me is how no one single player is doing all the work. Mike Napoli, Jose Ramirez, Lindor, Jason Kipnis, and pretty much all the starters, including Josh Tomlin, are making this thing go. Rather than one player carrying the Indians, the team is carrying the streak as a whole.
http://www.scout.com/cleveland-sports/story/1682988-win-streaks-aside-we-are-witnessing-historyMake no mistake, what the Indians are doing is completely unsustainable. Having entire months of baseball where your team wins more than 75-percent of the games is kind of crazy. I'm not going to throw cold water on this team, however. I actually take some solace in the fact that there are so many reasons the Indians are playing well. It provides a road map for them to continue to play winning baseball the rest of the season, even if not at the same high-flying rate we saw in June. That's just fine. This team has proven to themselves and us what they're capable of doing. More than anything, this should keep them loose and in the best possible mindset to maintain their divisional lead and make the playoffs with a variety of players stepping up from week to week.
Matching Matthew Dellavedova?
This year's NBA free agency is off to an insane start, but sanity has been redefined. Tomofey Mozgov got north or $60 million for four years, and that might be considered a good deal before it's all said and done. The Lakers struck early to get that deal, and Mozgov might have been able to get more, as crazy as that is to believe. It's with these kinds of things in mind that you have to look at the Cleveland Cavaliers' opportunity to match Matthew Dellavedova's contract offer, whatever it turns out to be, and wonder if they should match it almost no matter what.
Let's presume for the sake of conversation that Delly is going to get $10 million. Is that a "good deal?" For Delly it is, and in the new salary cap world it might be a pretty good deal as well. It's decidedly a bad deal for the Cleveland Cavaliers who would not only have to pay that price for Delly, but also luxury tax as they'll be over the cap. The true cost of not matching is losing assets for nothing. In order to make trades and do things, you have to send out matching salaries. The only thing worse than paying salaries is not having them on your books so you can trade them away when there's an opportune moment to make a move.
Replacing Delly as a player isn't super easy, but he's not an All-Star, as much as we love him. He is one of the more replaceable pieces in terms of basketball value. In this stage of the game for the Cavaliers, Delly is irreplaceable in terms of his contract being an asset. I don't know if that, plus the solid basketball reasons, are enough for the Cleveland Cavaliers to be out here matching offers to keep their guys, but I don't think it's a crazy thing to consider.
Your weekly moment of soccer zen...
Oh my. The touches...
That's it from me this week. Thanks so much for reading. Have a happy Fourth of July and please come back with all the appendages you leave with.