Al Ciamaichella takes a rather exhaustive look at the Brad Grant era of draft picks and international signings. 2012 is Grant's 5th season as Director of Amateur Scouting, and already he's had a much better record of drafting/signing than his predecessor John Mirabelli, who ran things from 1999 to 2008.
The takeaway quote:
When you look back at how this roster was built, you see a few good trades (Santana, Asdrubal, Masterson) working desperately to overcome a decade of terrible drafting. That’s not a good business model, on a number of levels. That’s also not Brad Grant’s fault. Since taking over in 2008, Grant has gone 4-4 with his first round picks in the Rule 4 Draft which is four more than the previous administration can claim. Between the draft picks and international signings, the lower levels of the Indians minor league system are well-stocked and loaded with potential impact talent. That talent of course is a long ways from the corner of Carnegie and Ontario, and a lot can happen between Lake County and Cleveland. But when you’re calling for heads to roll in the Indians front office, make sure that Brad Grant is spared your wrath.
Read the whole thing.
The top-to-bottom house-cleaning continues. I don't think it's Mills' fault (or the hitting/pitching coaches for that matter) that the Astros are terrible, as their team right now would probably be in the middle of the pack in the Pacific Coast League.
David Coleman of Crawfish Boxes has more.
Although the Indians do need to upgrade their corners badly, if the rotation doesn't improve to at least middle-of-the-pack status, it won't matter how improved the offense is. Most of the probable pitchers in next year's rotation are in the rotation right now. Ubdaldo Jimenez has an affordable 2013 option, and the same with Roberto Hernandez, while Justin Masterson and Zach McAllister are under team control (Masterson will be arbitration-eligible, while McAllister is a couple season away from arbitration). The next pitching coach, whether it's Ruben Niebla or someone else, is going to have to work with what's here and turn this season's disaster into an actual major-league rotation. The talent is there, but still, it's going to be a tall order.