Hey, Hoynsie: Is there a reason the Tribe doesn’t have any lefty starting pitchers? It seems to me they’re quite important, as the teams currently set up to use the most lefty starters — the Yankees, Cubs, Dodgers and Boston — appear to have four of the best teams in the majors. There are plenty of lefties available in free agency or through trades: Gio Gonzalez, Francisco Liriano, Dallas Keuchel, Wade Miley and others. Do you think the Tribe will go after any of these pitchers? –– AZCardman, Gilbert, Ariz.
Hey, AZCardman: The Indians’ rotation had the second lowest ERA in the AL last year without a lefty. In fact, the last lefty to make a big impression on the rotation was T.J. House, who had 18 starts in 2014.
Here’s what lefties hit against the Tribe’s top four starters last season: Corey Kluber. 227, Trevor Bauer .202, Carlos Carrasco .248, Mike Clevinger .234 and Shane Bieber .316. Except for Bieber, who was trying to keep his nose above water in his rookie year, they did a great job against lefties.
Even if the Indians trade a starter, I don’t see an overwhelming need to go out and get a another starter just because he’s left-handed. As long as you have capable lefties in the bullpen, the main goal for a front office is to find a starting pitcher who can get lefties and righties out regardless of what hand he throws the ball with.