Of Brian Giles is a low-ball hitter who likes the pitch in. INF Joey Cora is line-drive hitter who can turn on inside pitch or spray outside one the other way. INF Jeff Branson, lefty low-ball hitter, is good pinch hitter. OF Mark Whiten is still dangerous switch-hitting home run threat. C Einar Diaz, will chase almost any pitch and won't play much.
Jaret Wright, RHP Power pitcher with fastball he can sink (93 mph) or ride (97 mph). Key is whether he can throw his slurve for a strike and on a hitter's count. Otherwise, when in trouble will challenge hitters with his heat—so they look for it. Charles Nagy, RHP Fastball is only marginal (86 to 89 mph), but split-finger has been effective lately. He's 100-pitch guy whose mistakes come late. Bartolo Colon, RHP Big-time fastball (92 to 98 mph) of two-seam (sinking) and four-seam (riding) varieties. Struggles with curve and tends to leave changeup high and hittable. Doc Gooden, RHP No longer has smoking fastball and power curve. Relies on a sinking fastball and slider with deep break. Don't chase his pitches out of zone.
RH Mike Jackson doesn't throw hard for a closer, but he locates fastball well and moves it in and out. Slider is hard and breaks late, murder on righties. LH Paul Assenmacher is no longer strike-throwing machine he once was, but gets by with sweeping curve that's key pitch. RH Paul Shuey has three plus pitches: fastball (92-96), splitter and curve that breaks late and hard. Probably has best stuff on the team, but control is a problem. RH Dave Burba is solid power pitcher with sinking fastball, good curve and cutter he breaks in on hands of lefties. RH Steve Reed relies on sidewinding curve that's murder on righties. Crafty RH Chad Ogea makes his living with changeup. Had terrific postseason last year but was beset by injuries this season. LH Jim Poole relies on curve. Only time he uses average fastball is to push hitters off plate and raise hitters' plane of vision.
Cleveland's starters are six-inning guys, so middlemen Assenmacher and Shuey become crucial. If Colon and Wright don't have command of their stuff, they will have trouble with disciplined New York hitters. Offensively, Tribe needs to have Lofton, Thome and Justice come through against lefties David Wells and Andy Pettitte to have a chance.