The Cleveland Sports Syndrome (Popularly 'CS^2' in medical circles) has long plagued Ohio. Each year we hope and pray for a cure. Symptoms occasionally seem to diminish. But before we can declare ourselves CS^2 free, the illness strikes again.
I'm of course talking about the Browns and the Indian's persistent tendency to 'clean house' in exchange for promising new players, only to trade those players once they start to develop for washed-up old players in the belief that said players aren't on the decline, and that the Cleveland sports environment will spark a miraculous comeback.
Yes, more specifically I'm talking about the cutting of Browns QB's Derek Anderson and Brady Quinn, in exchange for an 8-year backup that few of us on the east coast have ever heard of, and a starting QB coming off his worst year ever, whose best year was in 2003--seven years ago.
I'm not a die-hard Anderson and Quinn fan by any means, so this is not a bitter response to losing any particularly liked player. And the QB dynamic in Cleveland certainly needed to change. I just don't see how this is a good solution.
To me, it looks like the same kind of hiring advice that brought coach Romeo Crennel to the club in 2005. We saw how that worked out. Really, it's the same thing that brought Mangini as his replacement. So far, that's not worked out either (I'm surprised they kept him, but I'm glad they did. One year isn't enough to get the measure of a coach; particularly since he's playing guys he didn't chose for the team).
Again, the Browns share this affliction with their baseball-brothers, the Cleveland Indians. After coming so close in 2007, we saw major changes to the club, particularly the pitching staff. Now I understand having to work with salary and budget. But hearing 2010 pre-season chatter about how the Indians have a "decent" line-up on offense, but have absolutely no pitching and thus will likely suffer through at least another sad year is a hard thing to swallow when at the end of 2007, we had arguably two of the top 3 pitchers in the American league, backed by a handful of only slightly less great pitchers. By the end of last year, we had nothing.
Also note how we let go Casey Blake and Ryan Garko; not exceptional players by any measure, but both experienced and dependable. Worse still was the release of Victor Martinez behind the plate; recently hailed by ESPN as one of the top three catchers of the decade (for his all-around abilities both offense and defense), at a position that is extremely difficult to find such players as the need far outweighs the availability of talent (silver lining is that one of their recent minor league pickups is prospected to become another such player, eventually. They'll likely trade him off before then though, since that's a side-effect of the CS^2 disease).
Anyway, I know we have a few Cleveland sports fans around here. Interested on their take on this whole thing. Also interested in any non-Cleveland sports fans who experience similar things in their favorite sport clubs. Does 'young player farming' really ever pay off, particularly when you cycle through it every five years or so?
As for Cleveland; the complete lack of any kind of championship, the rarity of championship appearances, and even the yearly struggle (and mostly failure) to even reach post-season play sort of speaks for itself.