Eric Wedge and the Cleveland Indians are now parting ways. Eric Wedge and his entire coaching staff won’t be back next season with the Cleveland Indians after it was announced on Wednesday that the team would be going in a different direction. It’s one of those moves where everyone knows that the Indians are just trying to ‘save face”, and by placing the blame on Eric Wedge, they can start with a clean slate in the next Major League Baseball season. It’s not exactly a fair way for Eric Wedge to end his days with the Cleveland Indians, but his teams have been underperforming recently, and the Cleveland ownership seems to want to move on without him.
Eric Wedge was completely removed as Indians manager just yet though, as he will be allowed to finish out the 2009 season as head of the club. That is at least a small show of respect from the Cleveland Indians franchise for all that Eric Wedge has done for them, and it allows Wedge to leave the club with a bit more dignity than if he had just been fired on the spot. Wedge is still under contract with the Indians for next season, so even if he isn’t manning the helm of the team, they are still going to have to pay him the more than $1 million that they will owe him. His coaches can move on to other teams right away if they are not under extended contracts.
In a show of pure class, Wedge gave the press conference announcing his departure, but didn’t place the blame on anyone else in the organization. Not only was this a very upstanding move by Eric Wedge, but probably an extremely smart one as well, because he certainly still has a future in front of him in the Major League Baseball. He won’t be able to manage another team next year while still under contract with the Indians, but that still gives him the prospects of finding another team to manage in the 2011 baseball season. There are definitely a lot of teams out there that could use him as a manager, and maybe he would have better luck with a team that was willing to spend the money to hang on to their free agents.
Eric Wedge has had a tough time these past couple of years in Cleveland, because the ownership has been losing the top tier players to free agency and trades. It seemed like the Indians were already heading down the path of rebuilding the franchise, and the players they were putting on the field for Wedge weren’t quite as competitive as Indians teams from the past. As of today Wedge and his Indians have a record of 64-92 in 2009, which would place them at a high draft spot for next year. The franchise isn’t lost yet, and maybe that is why they decided to bring in new blood and usher in the first moments post-Wedge. It won’t be a surprise if Wedge finds a lot of success with another team in the near future.
Source: Eric Wedge Press Conference