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MLB Cleveland Indians

Cleveland Indians: First-Half Report Card 2014

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Cleveland Indians: First-Half Report Card 2014

Michael Brantley Cleveland Indians
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Cleveland is battling to keep within striking distance of Detroit in the AL Central, but the Indians will fade fast if the team doesn't start stringing some wins together. It might not be the most likely of scenarios, but Cleveland still has a fighting chance of making the playoffs. Here is the Cleveland Indians' first-half report card.

Batting: B+

Michael Brantley Cleveland Indians
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Batting: B+

Michael Brantley Cleveland Indians
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The Indians have had a solid first half offensively, as the team currently ranks fifth in the league in RBIs and eighth in team batting average. Michael Brantley was the first-half star for Cleveland, as the left fielder is currently in the midst of a breakout season. Brantley boasts a .326 average with 15 homers and 63 RBIs, but Cleveland's offensive star will need more help from the supporting cast if the team hopes to play in October.

Fielding: F

Asdrubal Cabrera Cleveland Indians
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Fielding: F

Asdrubal Cabrera Cleveland Indians
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The Indians have been atrocious defensively in 2014, ranking last in the league with 77 errors committed. The team is also last in fielding percentage, as several costly errors have cost the Indians a few potential wins in the first half of the season. If Cleveland makes the playoffs, the baseball world will look back and see that the team significantly improved its defense down the stretch.

Starting Pitching: C

Corey Kluber Cleveland Indians
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Starting Pitching: C

Corey Kluber Cleveland Indians
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Cleveland's team ERA ranks 21st in the league and Justin Masterson has been massively disappointing, as the righty who had high hopes for 2014 currently has a 5.51 ERA. Zach McAllister hasn't been much better, but Trevor Bauer has been solid and Corey Kluber has been excellent. Kluber currently has 10 wins to go along with a 2.95 ERA, but the bottom half of Cleveland's rotation will have to be better in the second half to make the playoffs.

Relief Pitching: C

Cody Allen Cleveland Indians
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Relief Pitching: C

Cody Allen Cleveland Indians
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Cleveland's bullpen hasn't been anything special, but Cody Allen has been a revelation in the closer's role. Allen has 13 saves to go along with a 2.06 ERA, but the only reason he's even closing games is because John Axford had a terrible start to the year. The bullpen, like the starting rotation, has the potential to improve, but will need to do so quickly in the second half in order for the team to compete with Detroit.

Managing: B

Terry Francona Cleveland Indians
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Managing: B

Terry Francona Cleveland Indians
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Terry Francona is helping Cleveland tread water right now, so his management grade can't be too harsh. Francona has history on his side, as he led the Boston Red Sox to the team's first World Series title since 1918. This isn't 2004, however, and Cleveland's playoff hopes will continue to fade if the team can't start a winning streak. The potential is definitely there, so don't be surprised if the Indians make a late run at the AL Central.

Jacob Dennis is a writer at RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “Like” him on Facebook, and add him to your network on Google.