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20 Games Until...What?

Having already traded Russell Branyan, the Indians might not yet be done dealing. The past two seasons have shown us that nobody is really safe until August 1, not when there is a fire sale to be had.

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But the Indians have shown vigorous signs of life of late, with six wins in seven games entering today’s home stand finale against Oakland.

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Now, for the 20 games after today: seven versus Tampa Bay, four against the Yankees, and three each against Detroit, Minnesota and Texas, in no particular order. All of these teams are legitimate contenders, with New York and Texas in first place in their divisions and with the Tigers and Twins virtually tied atop the AL Central. And the Rays are within two games of the Yanks.

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So what happens if the Tribe goes, say, 12-8 in the next twenty games, which will take us to the cusp of the trading deadline? Do we still have the fire sale? Or do we take a big step back and rethink blowing up the team for prospects as we have recently?

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In the context of the Indians having a chance to contend this year...it isn’t going to happen. But a successful stretch piggy-backed to the recent decent run? That would give me pause for thought before giving up on sticking with what we have and contending next season.

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What would be the implications of a month of sustained solid baseball?

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.