It's time for our weekly look at the Indians' top players of the last seven days, in which one man is chosen as greater than the rest. Be sure to vote for you choice in the poll included at the bottom. Last week's voting was the closest of the year (only five votes separated 1st and 2nd), and for the first time, readers selected a different player than I chose.
- March 31-April 6: Lonnie Chisenhall
- April 7-13: David Murphy
- April 14-20: Michael Brantley
- April 21-27: Corey Kluber
- April 28-May 4: Carlos Santana
- May 5-11: M.Brantley (editorial pick), J.Tomlin (reader vote)
This week's nominees include three hitters who each posted big numbers (they're the three starters fans were probably most concerned about heading into the season, which says something about how this year has gone), and the team's best pitcher (who was viewed as the team's #3 starter heading into the year).
I suspect we're in for close vote, but it was also a fairly easy choice for me personally.
Cabrera's turnaround continued with a second straight strong week. He posted a line of .353/.455/.471, with a wRC+ of 163. He hit a couple doubles and scored a team-high 5 runs for the week. He had 3 hits in Wednesday's 15-4 romp, and he scored and drove in a run on Saturday while that game was still winnable.
Chisenhall continued his great start to the season, with a fantastic .500/.611/.643 line (262 wRC+). In Wednesday's rout Lonnie had the first 5-hit game of his career (incredibly, despite reaching base 5 times, he didn't score any of the team's 15 runs that night). He only started four games, as Francona continued to sit him against lefties (despite his teammates hitting southpaws worse than any team in decades).
Kluber made only one start last week, but it was easily the team's best of the week. He was on the mound for Wednesday's massive win, and while the offense was the story that night, Kluber gave up only 2 runs in 7 innings, with 9 strikeouts compared to only 4 hits and 1 walk. It's time to stop calling anyone else the Tribe's top pitcher, because the Klubot has grabbed hold of that distinction with both hands.
Murphy also continued what has been a great start to the season. His line for the week was .522/.522/.783 (277 wRC+), as he collected a team-high 12 hits, including a home run. He led the team with 6 RBI, and also scored 4. He had 5 hits in Wednesday's big win, three of them doubles, and he had at least one hit in all 5 games he played last week. He also stole a base, just for yucks.
Kluber's start was good, but not so good that it makes up for the fact that it was his only appearance of the week. Cabrera is on a nice roll this month, but he's numbers don't stand up to those of the other two position-player candidates this week. I think this one comes down to Murphy and Chisenhall (who became the first Tribe teammates with 5+ hits apiece in the same game since 1932). Murphy hit for more power and got more playing time, which makes him a fairly easily choice for me.
Congratulations for the second time, David!