Frankie's Hall of Fame future fractures frustrated fan base

A glimpse into the future ...

July 2020

Cleveland Indians fans worldwide mourned the arrival of the day they had collectively prayed would never come. The Indians announced today that star shortstop Francisco Lindor had been traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for an array of young talent which team executives hope will keep them competitive for the next decade and beyond. It appears that it had better be the case.

Although the team was only four games behind the Twins at the time of the deal, owner Paul Dolan said the Tribe had to "maximize Lindor's high market value," and that the hoopla regarding Lindor's trade rumors had become "a distraction and was impacting the clubhouse." None of the current Indians players wanted to be quoted directly about the trade, but one said off the record – and on the condition of anonymity – that the only thing that was a distraction was "the cheapskate owner." Others questioned whether the team could recover from losing a player of Frankie's caliber.

Protests outside of Progressive Field included an estimated crowd of about 30,000 fans. Some observers joked that it was the largest crowd at Progressive so far this year, since some fans had already vowed to boycott Indians games after the Dolans admitted they didn't have the financial resources to sign Lindor to a contract extension. Since that announcement, attendance was down an average of 6,700 fans per game. "This is not helping the situation," argued a distraught Paul Dolan. It was clear the fan reaction was far more impactful than Tribe ownership had anticipated.

September 2020

After an August in which the Indians won 8 games and lost 21, dropping them into a last-place tie with the Kansas City Royals, Terry Francona announced that he was retiring as manager of the Cleveland Indians at the conclusion of the season. According to Francona, "the last straw" was when the front office tried to convince the Indians' skipper to change his name from "Tito" to "Frito" so the Indians could enter into a lucrative advertising/promotional deal with a chip company.

"I realize that times are tight," acknowledged Francona, "but to ask me to do something like that so they can make a buck..." Tito's voice trailed off and then a grin crossed his face. "Hey, why don't they market their chips with a new chip dip that tastes, if you'll pardon the expression, 'foul', and they can tie it to trading Frankie, and call it, 'Attendance Dip'. Get it?" Don't quit your day job, Frit, er, Tito. Oh wait, he just did.

October 2020

Indians executives, who earlier in the month had "categorically" denied knowing what had happened to Progressive Field's Bob Feller statue, finally admitted to knowing its whereabouts. "It's not something we are proud of," admitted Indians President Paul Dolan, "but we were afraid of not making payroll last month, so we had the statue melted down and sold the metal for scrap."

Dolan also insisted that the Indians would be financially "fine" for the 2021 season. "There's lots of other things around here we can melt down for scrap, too," he chortled.

March 2021

The Indians announced they have put the team up for sale. They said they are open to all offers and even will consider trades, including automobiles. "Drag it in, pull it in, push it in, we'll listen to all offers," said Paul "The Dealer" Dolan.

Although Indians officials refused to reveal why the Dolans suddenly decided to sell the team, many speculate that the clincher was when Browns owner Jimmy Haslam called and offered his "expertise" in running a pro sports franchise. Understandably, after hearing that, the Dolans said – in unison – "It's time to go."

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits. My forte is humor and horror...What a combo!

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Volume 12, Issue 4, Posted 10:03 AM, 02.18.2020