Tribe waiting for seeds to bloom

Tribe waiting for seeds to bloom

OAKLAND -- Some days are good. Others are bad.

Some days will call for a pat on the butt. Others will require a kick in the butt.

But, according to manager Eric Wedge, "that's all a part of being a big leaguer and being a young big leaguer."

And with 12 rookies on a 30-man roster, the Tribe is having to spend more time than usual grooming the aforementioned youngsters. With the team well out of playoff contention, though, the amount of learning time has proved to be extensive.

"We want to help these young kids learn every day," Wedge said. "It's been such an unusual and trying year, you should be able to learn more from that than you do on a good year.

"You manage toward your players, you coach toward your players. Obviously there's a lot more of that going on with younger players."

Thus, the bigger picture in Cleveland these days involves "more structure" and "more conversations."

"It's more of a learning process, especially during the game," Wedge said. "They're going to make mistakes, whether they be mental or fundamental. Whatever you have to do to help them understand and get better, that's why we're here."

One suck rookie involved in the Tribe's adjustment process is Friday starter David Huff, who will make his 22nd big league start against the A's. He is 3-0 with a 2.84 ERA in his past three starts, but -- like most rookies -- has witnessed an up-and-down season.

"You have good days and bad days," Wedge said, "but consistency is key. There's nothing more important than being consistent.

"It's the big leagues. There's a certain level of play that's expected. You gotta really work hard to keep your head up, make plays, make good decisions and stay ahead of the game. For young players, that's hard for them to do because it does speed up here and things happen fast. That's why you have to work that much harder mentally."

Pitching matchup
CLE: LHP David Huff (10-7, 6.14 ERA)
Huff, who joined the Indians' rotation in mid-May, became the club's first 10-game winner this season when he turned in six innings against the Royals on Sept. 12, allowing three runs on seven hits with a walk and six strikeouts. He's shown improved command and aggressiveness of late, as his rookie season winds to a close.

OAK: LHP Brett Anderson (9-10, 4.37 ERA)
In his past two starts, Anderson has picked up back-to-back wins for the third time this season. The lefty pitched seven strong innings in a winning effort against Minnesota last Saturday, allowing just two runs on five hits while collecting four strikeouts. It was the fewest hits Anderson had allowed since July 29, when he gave up just four to Boston. Anderson also did not surrender a walk on Saturday -- the first time in 10 starts he did not allow a free pass. He'll be facing Cleveland for the first time in his career.

This is the first time the Tribe has visited Oakland since April 4-6, 2008. "You've got a different cast of characters and new faces, so you have to prepare and do a little homework," Wedge said. "They're playing well right now, we're having our struggles right now." ... Wedge and A's skipper Bob Geren, both catchers, played together with the Boston Red Sox in 1992. "Bob's a good guy," Wedge said. "We got along well." ... Lou Marson set a career high with three hits in Thursday's game, the third multi-hit game of his career. ...With a triple in the fifth inning of Thursday's contest, Trevor Crowe extended his hitting streak to six games. He is batting .318 (7-for-22) during that span.

 Buy tickets now to catch the game in person.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television

On radio
• WTAM 1100

Up next
• Saturday: Indians (Jeremy Sowers, 6-9, 4.49) at Athletics (Gio Gonzalez, 5-6, 6.31), 4:05 p.m. ET
• Sunday: Indians (Fausto Carmona, 3-11, 6.58) at Athletics (Dana Eveland, 1-3, 7.26), 4:05 p.m. ET
• Monday: Off-day

Jane Lee is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.