The biggest need in the Indians lineup right now is a player with the ability to get on base and the ability to move once there. The Indians need to focus on acquiring these two skills, regardless of the players age, defensive ability, perceived blocking of a player, or whether or not the hitter is a left handed bat or right handed bat. The Indians provide a benefit of a friendly park for left handed hitters and a pitching staff that is constructed to minimize both balls in play and fly balls to left field.
1. A player who is picked up now should not be degraded for what particular skill set they lack. Anyone brought in today will have scratch and dent written all over them. They will either be a defensive liability, too old, too inexperienced, have a poor track record, etc. The suggestion that the player acquired is not any better than what a team has already should only be applied when compared to the specific skill set an organization is looking to fill.
2. I hate the term blocking as it indicates that the manager and GM have no clue as to what they are doing. The term blocking ranks slightly ahead of the "organization ruined a player" adage. If guys can hit management will find at bats for them. Any player added to a roster at this point is going to be acquired based on filling a certain skill set which will add value to the team either by outproducing someone on the field, providing depth and insurance at multiple positions, and putting someone who may of been pushed into an uncomfortable role back into a role where the player has had success.
In the case of the Cleveland Indians it has become quite obvious that management believes that Shelly Duncan is not suited to be an everyday player but rather a heavily used role player at LF/DH/1b and be utilized as a pinch hitter off the bench. He will still see plenty of action but his skill set doesn't seem to match the Indians need of On-Base Skill (career .313) plus ability to move on the bases (1 career stolen base).