Considering the amount of turnover and adversity the 2011 Akron Aeros went through, it is amazing that they managed to get to a 73-69 record. That team lost top players Jason Kipnis, Lonnie Chisenhall, and Alex White to promotion and lost Drew Pomeranz, Joe Gardner, and Matt McBride to the Ubaldo Jimenez trade. On top of that, the Aeros had to deal with injuries ruining Nick Weglarz’s effectiveness, the suspension of John Drennen for performance enhancing drugs midseason, Matt Lawson sudden retirement, and players like Jordan Henry and Kelvin De La Cruz not living up to their expectations.
Despite these problems and obstacles, there were plenty of good things to come out of 2011 for the Aeros. The emergence of Austin Adams, Tim Fedroff, Cory Burns, Chen-Chang Lee, Juan Diaz, and even Beau Mills to an extent were bright spots for fans and the organization. These players were a big part of what success the Aeros had last year and will look to continue improving in 2012. Unluckily for some of these players (but luckily for those of us who follow the Aeros), they will return to Akron in 2012 – at least for the start of the season. If they continue to improve this year, however, they will get their tickets to Columbus and Cleveland soon enough.
The 2012 Aeros will likely be more of the same mediocrity that the 2011 team offered, but they may impress as the season goes on. The big issue with this Akron team is the lack of top talent on the roster. With Austin Adams starting on the DL, the Aeros will not have any of IPI’s top 20 prospects on their Opening Day roster. Most of the Tribe’s best talent is still down in the lower levels of the minors, meaning the majority of the Aeros’ roster consists of uninspiring, low-ceiling prospects or non-prospects. The Aeros will be a solid team, but without top-end talent, it is hard to see them competing at a high level.
2012 will see the return of manager Chris Tremie for his second year at the helm of the Aeros, and he will be joined by pitching coach Tony Arnold and hitting coach Rouglas Odor. Let’s break down each position of the Akron Aeros’ roster and see what Tremie and company have to work with in 2012. (Each prospect’s ranking in IPI’s top 100 is in parenthesis after their name). Read More…
From Indians Prospect Insider, April 3, 2012