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People knew Jose Ramirez and Francisco Lindor would have a great season but there are some on this Indians team that not many would have expected a great season out of. Here are four surprising all-star candidates for the Cleveland Indians.
In only 31 games, Gonzalaz has the highest batting average on the team at .340. He has just 53 at-bats on the season but he has proven very capable of producing when Terry Francona gives him the chance to do so. Gonzalaz could be an everyday player if the Tribe decide to move Kipnis at the trade deadline or if an injury occurs. As of now, it appears that there’s no way that Francona would bench Jason Kipnis. If Gonzalaz gets a chance I think it’s safe to say he won’t disappoint Tribe fans.
This is only a surprise depending on who you talk to. Brantley only played in 101 games over 2016 and 2017 and started this season on the disabled list. Brantley is hitting .317 and has played in 54 of the Indians’ 64 games. His 70 hits are good for third on the team behind Lindor and Ramirez. Brantley has 11 home runs on the season which might not sound like a crazy stat but his career high is 20. The Indians are only 64 games in so that total should continue to climb throughout the year and hopefully shatter 20. Many people were highly critical when the Indians used Brantley’s option for this season but so far it has looked like a very smart decision.
Neil Ramirez is probably the biggest surprise on this list. Ramirez has appeared in 11 games for Cleveland and has pitched in 10.1 innings. He has given up four runs which is good enough for a 3.48 ERA. Ramirez is the “surprise” in the bullpen like Tyler Olson was last season. Olson gave up 0 runs over the season and while Ramirez hasn’t quite done that he is putting up some impressive numbers. Ramirez could be in line to get some more appearances down the road. He has most definitely been a pleasant surprise for this struggling Tribe bullpen.
This is another one where it depends who you ask. Clevinger shined last season when he was given the chance to start and so far this year, he has been a starter for the whole season and has made the most of the opportunity. In January if you had asked who would be in the starting rotation, a lot of people would have included Clevinger on that list. Although a lot of people would have included him on the list, not everyone did. No one was even totally sure if Francona was going to include Clevinger in the starting rotation. Clevinger has started 13 games this season. He has pitched 84.1 innings this season. Clevinger averages more than six innings per start and has an ERA of 3.31. If the Indians want to go deep into the postseason, they might need
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