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Carlos Santana is not going anywhere, and that's okay

No, Lonnie Chisenhall should not replace him at first base.

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Carlos Santana has been pretty awful lately, there's no arguing that. Even with Wednesday's big two-hit game, he's been mired in an otherworldly slump. Oddly enough, Santana was one of the few Cleveland Indians that had a solid April to start the season. He finished the month with a wRC+ of 132, a 20.2% walk rate, and three home runs. On top of that, he had a low .255 BABIP, meaning there was a chance he could be due to trend upwards. What could go wrong?

Unfortunately since then, from May 1 to June 23, he's been anywhere from below average to terrible. He's still getting his fair share of walks -- 16.8% walk rate in that span -- but he's not hitting with the power and with enough "clutchyness" that fans come to expect from a clean up first baseman.

What can be argued against is the insane and borderline damaging theories that have been popping up among Cleveland Indians fans. I've seen everything from "trade him" to "send him down to the minors" to just "put him on the bench" with no clear plan after that. We're all entitled to opinions, but a lot of these fan ideas show the craziest side of the kneejerking, overreacting nature of sports fans.

No matter the theory, no matter how you look at it, the correct answer will almost always end with Carlos Santana still being the Cleveland Indians starting first baseman. Not only do the Indians not have many options in terms of replacing him, but there is just no need to.

The simplest "fix," if the Indians didn't want to make any big roster moves, would be to put Brandon Moss at first and have a mix of David Murphy and Ryan Raburn take his spot in the outfield. But what would that accomplish? In the end of this kneejerk scenario, we're left with someone who is hitting just as bad as Santana at first base minus the walks, with a platoon of streaky hitters who are an embarrassment in the field more often than not (although Raburn is doing his best to shake that image of him with recent highlights).

Trade Santana? For what? If you want another legitimate first baseman, you're not going to get one by trading a first baseman at arguably his lowest trade value of his career. If anyone is willing to pull the trigger on trading Santana (and you shouldn't be), it would require sending someone else along with him. Meaning in a single trade you're betting on Santana not bouncing back while in the prime of his career, and whatever other piece you want to include also not being more damaging than whatever marginal improvement the front office could muster with the trade.

Of all the insane, over-reactionary ideas, nothing is more kneejerk than the idea that Carlos should be moved or benched to make room for Lonnie Chisenhall to return to the team and take over at first base. Santana may be struggling right now in terms of hitting for power, but Lonnie was atrocious all year long with no hope in sight. If you're willing to make a switch based on that, I think there's a reason you're not a general manager. He's hitting the cover off the ball in Triple-A right now (188 wRC+), but he's always been a fantastic minor league player. At this point it means almost nothing when it comes to how he'll translate to a major league hitter. His struggles are a matter for another post, but in short, no. No. No. No no no no no.

Santana is in a slump, and it sucks to watch. It sucks even more because he's struggling to hit with runners in scoring position, but that doesn't mean it's time to start calling him a bum or demanding he be replaced just yet. He's slumped before, and he'll slump again.

The Tribe could also do much worse than Santana at first base right now. Among the 13 qualified AL first baseman, Santana is 7th in fWAR (1.0), 1st in walks (17.9%), and 8th in wRC+ (112). There is still a lot of good to be had from Carlos, he's in the prime years of his career, and the team has control over him for at least another two years. He's not going anywhere anytime soon, and that's perfectly ok.

Basically what I'm saying is stand down... Stand down... Goooood.