1) Tribe events in Cleveland this week
Tribe Fest 2014 is taking place this weekend at Progressive Field. There are two sessions on Saturday and one on Sunday. Tickets are $10 for adults; kids are admitted for free if they attend with an adult who's obtained a pass ahead of time (otherwise admission for kids is $5 at the door). Almost every prominent member of the team will be there, as will top prospects Clint Frazier and Trevor Bauer, and a collection of former Indians stars, including Jim Thome, Kenny Lofton, Omar Vizquel, and Charles Nagy.
I'm sure some of you will be in attendance, and LGT would love to hear about your experience, either in the comments, or as a FanPost.
Next week brings another annual Tribe event, but it's for prospects, not fans. The winter development program helps the team's top prospects acclimate to Cleveland, to Progressive Field, and to the team's training facilities. 15 prospects will be attended this year's program, including Francisco Lindor, Jose Ramirez, Joe Wendle, Cody Anderson, Tyler Naquin, Jesus Aguilar, and Jake Lowery.
2) Francona answers fans' questions
Terry Francona participated in a Q&A with season-ticket holders in Cleveland on Friday. The event was filmed and will air on SportsTime Ohio next Thursday at 6:30 PM. Francona expressed confidence in Trevor Bauer being a meaningful contributor to the team in 2014, said he talks with GM Chris Antonetti almost every day, and said Carlos Santana will "be given to opportunity to go to Goodyear (the Tribe's spring training site) and play some third base."
3) Clint Frazier tells all (well, not all, but a lot)
Tony Lastoria of Indians Baseball Insider recently had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Clint Frazier, the Tribe's #1 pick in 2013. Frazier talks about his high school career, the buildup to last year's draft, and what he's been working on to continue developing as a player. Good stuff.
4) Salazar hopes to pitch full season
The Plain Dealer's Paul Hoynes writes that while Danny Salazar has been heavily protected by the Indians to this point, but that "the cotton is coming off this year."
"I've been working toward making over 30 starts. Right now I feel great. I hope I can stay in the rotation the whole season."
5) Indians add another backstop
The Indians signed veteran catcher Luke Carlin to a minor-league deal on Friday. Carlin was previously in the Cleveland system from 2010 to 2012, spending most of that time in Columbus, but also appearing in 10 games for the Tribe. It's not yet clear if the team will carry a third backstop on the roster behind Yan Gomes and Carlos Santana, but Carlin gives the team another option to watch in spring training, along with fellow veteran Matt Treanor, and prospects Jake Lowery, Roberto Perez, and Tony Wolters.
6) This week's off-topic topic
There are certainly a number of actors and actresses I like a great deal, who's presence in a movie make me more likely to see it, but for a few years now, it's been a film's director that means the most to me, in terms of my interest. A good director will attract other talented people both in front of and behind the camera, and can also turn a good script into a great movie, and a great script into a fantastic film.
Top directors of the 2000s:
6) Paul Thomas Anderson - He's only made three movies this century, but There Will Be Blood is probably enough to get him on this list all by itself, as it's my favorite film of the last ten years.
5) Steven Spielberg - He'd be atop my all-time list, on account of Jaws, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T., and Jurassic Park. He's made many good movies since 2000 too though, with Catch Me If You Can being my favorite.
4) Joel Coen - The Coens make such varied movies, but no matter what direction they head in, the results are always enjoyable. O Brother, Where Art Thou? is my favorite of their films from the 2000s.
3) David Fincher - If this list was for the last 20 years, he might be at the top. Even without Seven and Fight Club being counted here, his body of work this century is fantastic. Zodiac is my favorite from that pool.
2) Wes Anderson - Like Fincher, Anderson loses a couple great movies because of the timeframe I've chosen. He's also directed my #1 movie from three different years this century, with The Royal Tenenbaums being my favorite.
1) Christopher Nolan - It's close, but Nolan wins out, based on having directed one of my top three in five different years. Every time you ask me which of his works is my favorite, you're likely to get a different answer.