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Masterson will be an ace for years to come
The Indians' starting pitching is on its way to becoming one of the best in the majors from 1-5. This can also be attributed to the team's strong ability to swing solid trades for great young talent.
I have to admit, I was devastated when we traded Cliff Lee. He was my favorite player on the team and I absolutely loved his approach to the game.
When I first heard who we had received for him, I was a little upset. I was thinking Carrasco, Marson, Donald and Knapp may be good pieces, but nothing like Lee.
Now I was right, none of these guys are anything like Lee.
However, three of them are on the major league roster and Knapp still has a lot of potential, but has been slowed by injury.
Another one of my favorite Indians who was traded, Victor Martinez, netted us Bryan Price, Nick Hagadone and Justin Masterson. I have to admit that I was not near as upset about this trade off the bat because Masterson grew up and pitched at a high school that was only about 30 minutes away from my hometown.
Since these trades, Masterson has become the ace of our staff and if Carrasco can get his head on straight, he has the potential to be a very solid four or five starter. Also, the emergence of Josh Tomlin has been huge for this team. The young Texan has been a dominant force in the rotation and has potential to be an amazing No. 3 starter.
Another huge move for this rotation was the recent addition of ace Ubaldo Jimenez from the Colorado Rockies.
Many people questioned the move for giving up two top pitching prospects, but in my opinion, anytime you can get a guy who is proven over a few "hyped prospects" who have not really proven anything yet, I say go for it.
His club-friendly contract makes him an even better fit. And after last night's amazing performance against the Tigers in which he only gave up three runs through eight innings, (the three runs should have been none has Santana whiffed on a throw from Asdrubal Cabrera allowing the Tigers inning to continue leading to three runs.) Jimenez and Masterson will anchor the front end of the stuff for multiple years.
Fausto Carmona has been up and down with injuries and questionable mental toughness. However, as of late, he has shown glimpses of returning to his form from 2008. Even if that doesn't happen, he makes a suitable No. 5 starter.
However, in my opinion, if he can't regain consistency, I feel this team would benefit far more from having Huff in the rotation to provide a left-handed presence than Carmona's inconsistent arm. I hope Carmona proves me wrong, but only time will tell.
A rotation of Masterson, Jimenez, Tomlin, Carrasco, Huff/Carmona could be very potent for now and in the future.