Sunday, July 27

Tribe Drop 2 of 3 to Twins

I'm not sure what to think at this point. Yeah, wins and losses are about the same for a team this far back. Almost every game in this series had either some good thing to be said about it or something good at least going into into it. OK, I don't know what that means either.

Friday's game was started by Cliff Lee, who ran his record to 14-2. For a team thirteen games below .500 to have a pitcher on their staff with a record of 14-2 is mind-boggling. Lee now accounts for 31% of our wins. I wonder what the single season record is for highest percentage of a team's wins by one pitcher? The Tribe won this contest 5-4 but it shouldn't have been that close. Lee pitched eight innings giving up two runs. Kobayashi was brought in to finish off the ninth and promptly gave up two runs and put a man on second without getting an out. Perez, whom some would say was the best reliever of late (just wait a paragraph or two), came in to get the three outs and the save, preserving Lee's win. The evening's offense was brought to you by our young outfielders with one RBI each and Shoppach with two.

Saturday saw the return of Fausto, making his first start since the end of May. This wasn't what anyone was hoping for. Carmona left after 2.1 innings having given up nine runs on seven hits and three walks. Not good. Mastny comes in and pitches a solid 2.2 scoreless innings. Lewis's appearance resulted in two runs on five hits in 2.1 innings pitched. Betancourt and Mujica round out the rest of the bullpen usage. I'm going to borrow a idea from a fellow blogger and point out that Lewis may rely on his adrenaline in situations. This was why he may have been so effective last year in the playoff race but has pitched less than satisfactory recently. The Indians offense did score four runs, but when facing a team putting up 11, it's tough. Peralta had two, Marte had a solo homerun, and Shoppach contributed again with an RBI.

Today's game was another surprise but with the usual result. Jeremy Sowers was perfect through five innings. Yes, our Jeremy Sowers who has struggled in the Majors of late was perfect early. Late being the last two years, but still, Sowers is important to the future of this team. Unfortunately, Jeremy's effort of 8.0 innings with two earned runs resulted in a no decision. As jinxed in a previous paragraph Perez came in the ninth to see if he could pickup back-to-back saves. The answer was no. Perez game up two runs in his inning of work. Offensively, when your two RBI's come from guys named Fasano and Dellucci you know you're in trouble. Hey I will give credit to those guys behind the plate contributing at least an RBI a game this series. Otherwise the Tribe left 15 on base compared to the Twins' 7.

So there you have it: a series loss at home at the hands of intradivison rivals the Minnesota Twins. Tough losses and even the win was a close one. Let's hope Fausto was trying a little to hard to either not hurt himself or pitch well. Sowers had an OK outing last time and this one was extremely encouraging.

In other news, the Indians traded Casey Blake for a truly amazing package of two minor leaguers from the Dodgers. Both are legitimate prospects and considering the only thing we lost was 200 Blake at bats I'm truly in favor of this trade. I can't believe the Dodgers were that desperate for Blake. While I've been down on Blake for the past few years he was a good clubhouse guy (I hear) and this year was playing above his career averages, and he is pretty much the only one doing that. I'm not one for trade analysis but Terry Pluto is, and it is his job and all. Supposedly the Indians wouldn't mind unloading Bryd and Dellucci before the deadline. However, don't expect these Blake-like deals to continue.

The Indians decided to move Laffey to AAA and keep Ginter around for an extended look. This was my prefered move but I can't really figure out exactly why. We'll chalk it up to Ginter being an underdog who has preformed as asked for this last place team and for that I would hate to throw him away so soon. Hafner and his 65% strength shoulder were moved to the 60 day DL which I've heard decribed as a paper move not a real move. Andy Gonzalez was brought up and room was needed on the 40 man roster hence the move, I think.

Finally the St. Louis Cardinals gave up RHP Anthony Reyes for minor league RH reliever Luis Perdomo. Consider this a trade of pitchers both teams had maybe begun to overlook. Reyes has pitched in the majors and and has a 2-14 record with the Cardinals. Perdomo has pitched really well in Kinston but is 24 years old which is a little old to be pitching single A and could be partically blamed on the Indians not moving him up sooner. Either way, both pitchers have some work to do before either contributes successfully at the major league level, but the 26 year old Reyes is closer than Perdomo.

Enough trade and heartbreaking loss talk - onto the series ahead. The Tribe welcome the Tigers to Progessive for a four game mid-week series. The Tigers come in 6.5 games back of the White Sox and what can only be called a disappointing two games above .500. Of course they don't trail the Royals because that would be really disappointing, even if by only half a game.

Game 1: Kenny Rogers, LHP (8-6, 4.48) vs. Paul Byrd, RHP (4-10, 5.28)
Game 2: Armando Galarraga, RHP (8-4, 3.27) vs. Matt Ginter, RHP (1-1, 2.45)
Game 3: Nate Robertson, LHP (6-8, 5.63) vs. Cliff Lee, LHP (14-2, 2.29)
Game 4: Justin Verlander, RHP (8-10, 4.29) vs. Fausto Carmona, RHP (4-3, 4.33)

Game 1 is an all-old-crafty-pitcher affair. The previously-mentioned Ginter takes the hill Tuesday against rookie Galarraga who has done OK for himself this year. Cliff Lee starts Wednesday night against fellow lefty Robertson with a less than low 5.63 ERA. Thursday's game is a 12:05 PM day game if you're looking to take Thursday off. Expect to a see a different Carmona, or at least hope to.

Go Tribe!

(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

1 comment:

Andy said...

I was at the game Saturday - what a disaster. Fausto will be OK, I think, but ugh.

Fire Joe Morgan has a nice article about the trade, basically filleting LA.