By Ryan Isley
Saturday night started as any other normal night at the ballpark. I had decided to go to Canal Park in Akron and buy a ticket to check out the Akron Aeros because Drew Pomeranz was supposed to start the game and with him on a pitch count, Alex White would be called on to relieve him. White was in Akron on a rehab assignment, trying to come back from a finger injury.
Four hours after I entered the gates, my brain was still spinning, my cell phone was dying and my Twitter account was blowing up.
I had seen a tweet from Jonas Fortune of the Akron Beacon Journal during warm-ups that White would not pitch as he would be held back a couple of extra days. With all of the rumors swirling around that the Indians were in the running for Colorado Rockies ace Ubaldo Jimenez, I started wondering if something really was up.
When starting lineups were announced, Pomeranz was still the starting pitcher, so I tweeted that it looked as if the Indians top pick in 2010 would still be making the start as scheduled, meaning he was not involved in a trade as of yet.
I had tweeted that I did not see White at all before the game. During the national anthem, I saw White appear for the first time as he headed out to the field with the rest of the team.
Once the anthem ended, we all noticed it was not Pomeranz on the mound, rather it was Matt Langwell. I found this odd because if Pomeranz was not in, it meant he had either been traded or was on the verge of a trade. Also, if White was not the pitcher on the mound, I started wondering if the Indians had done the unthinkable and traded both of their top pitching prospects.
I kept an eye on Twitter, where the Jimenez to Cleveland rumors started heating up and at one point seemed to include not only Pomeranz and White, but Jason Kipnis as well.
The game was in the top of the 3rd inning but to be honest I could not tell you one thing that had happened yet. I decided it was a waste to sit in the stands so I left the park and headed back to the Aeros player’s parking lot with the thought that if a trade did happen, at least one of the players would leave early.
I was down there about 35 minutes when I saw White emerge from the park talking on his phone. While I could not hear everything, I could tell by his demeanor that he was not real happy. White told the person he had to go but would call them back and then slipped back into the park. By this time, rumor had started that the deal was White, Pomeranz and Matt McBride for Jimenez.
As White went back in, Bryan Price came out in full uniform, took off his jersey and got on his phone. I watched as he walked to the far end of the lot and continued his conversation. I tweeted this and then found out there might be a fourth player in the deal. I wondered if it could be Price, but originally thought maybe he was part of another trade.
I continued to wait and White came out of the park with his bags around 9 pm. I went over and talked to him for a minute and could see his frustration.
The first words out of White’s mouth were that he thought it was a stupid move.
I asked if Price was involved in the deal and he looked surprised. He told me that Price was not involved but confirmed that a fourth player was indeed involved. He said the fourth was to be Joe Gardner. That was the first time anyone had heard that Gardner was involved.
Originally, White told me that it was him, McBride and Gardner in the deal. When I asked about Pomeranz, White told me that Drew was the player to be named later.
With that I said thanks, wished him good luck and watched him get in his vehicle. As he drove off, he was still shaking his head.
So was I.