WHILE I UNDERSTAND THAT 90% OF Cleveland sports fans are very concerned about the Browns and Johnny Football, there are a few of us left that look forward to baseball season, and the Tribe will open the season this coming Monday night in Oakland.  It's actually been a little tough this year acquiring "Indian Fever", what with the weather and all, but I'm ready!  How will the Indians do this year?  I haven't got a clue, but I'm giving it my best bet...

I don't believe the Tribe will win many games this year because of offense, as they'll be average at best.  Now if Nick Swisher and Michael Bourne stay healthy and play up to their potential, that will make a world of difference.  The big unknown for the team will be the pitching.  Justin Masterson is probably their best pitcher and will be number one in the rotation.  After that it's kids or others who do not have a track record of success in the majors.  The team lost several members of last years staff (which was much better than expected) so some of the kids (like Cory Kluber) must come through.  All in all I feel good about this years team, but being a lifetime Tribe fan, I refuse to let myself get too excited (I'm sure you know what I'm talking about).

So here's my prediction for the 2014 season.  The Indians will finish no worse than 2nd place in the AL Central and will be in the running for a playoff spot.  As a matter of fact (well not really fact) I think the Indians could be the surprise team of the year in the AL.  I believe Terry Francona is the best manager in baseball and is worth about a dozen wins all by himself.  The Tigers have a new manager (Leland retired) and they no longer have Prince Fielder or Jhonny Peralta.  Yea, I know they're still loaded, but they had better not take the Indians lightly or they could be spending October watching our Tribe in the playoffs.  Have I gone crazy, yea probably, but I'm psyched...LET'S PLAY BALL!!!

I'LL TALK TO YOU ON MONDAY morning from 9am until noon and I'd like to hear your predictions.  Have a great weekend.  JIM