Sunday, August 31

Oh Brother

Before the series, I was afraid Sowers' performance was going to ruin this run of wins the Tribe have put together. Facing the worst team in the AL did alleviate some of my worries. However, Sowers did a decent job, giving up three runs in 5.0 innings of work. OK, decent may be a little strong, but he didn’t lose this game for the Tribe. No, the Tribe only mustered two runs on nine hits and hit into three double plays to spoil any chance they had. So the offense which had performed so well on the 10-game winning streak was a little weak during Friday’s game one of this series. Seattle starter Felix Hernandez picked up win number nine and Sowers was hit with his seventh loss on the season. The Indians bullpen of Rincon, Donnelly, and Mujica was perfect for the final four innings, only giving up one hit. Hernandez just barely out-pitched Sowers and that was all it took. Tribe lose 2-3.

OK game 2 of this atrocity was in no way the fault of the starting pitcher Anthony Reyes. If anything Reyes continued his extended audition with the Tribe nicely by pitching seven runs of one run baseball. Reyes with the Tribe has yet to allow more than two runs in any of his outings. So who’s to blame for this loss to the worst team in the AL? Well, with Reyes pitching like that ,we could blame the offense. Yes, the offense that seemed invincible a few days ago is now as impotent as a Nevada boxing commissioner. I could say that Victor’s return has also returned the bad mojo, but things were bad even after Victor got hurt so I can’t blame him, yet. While Choo’s homerun in the bottom of the ninth with Garko standing on first tied the game Jensen Lewis promptly gave up two runs in his inning of so-called relief. Lewis takes the loss and I don’t want to talk about this game anymore, bring on the next victim. Indians lose 3-4.

Game 3 was attended by Andy and Nick so maybe one of them could point out exactly went wrong. I spent my day happily in non-Indian related pursuits so this is a recap written up from the box score, let’s see how I do. Well the Tribe lost. Hell! Damn! Fart! Zach Jackson gave up six runs in five innings of work. Crap! Boobs! Crap! Well that’s all I can muster, sorry. Jackson had looked OK before today’s start. Maybe a spot starter or a 5th guy in a hurt rotation nothing more at this point. Today’s outing against the M’s of Seattle didn’t help his case. Here's to hoping everyone gets their collective shit together soon. Tribe lose 4-6.

During our weekly conversation I tried to console my father that; hey sure a team that had just won 10 games in a row was swept at home by the worst team in the league, but things will be OK. Luckily for everyone involved Cliff Lee takes the mound tomorrow. Still it would appear I may have been right when I said the 10-game winning streak was a correction of statistics not a trend. Moving on we welcome the division-leading Chicagoans to the shores of Erie for a three game series. Here’s to better results.

Game 1: Clayton Richard, LHP (2-2, 6.33) vs. Cliff Lee, LHP (19-2, 2.43)
Game 2: John Danks, LHP (10-7, 3.30) vs. Fausto Carmona, RHP (7-5, 4.50)
Game 3: Javier Vazquez, RHP (10-12, 4.38) vs. Jeremy Sowers, LHP (2-7, 5.92)

After this last series I think I'm safe in saying that there is no game this team can't win or lose. However this is the part where I usually say considering the pitching matchups which games our team can win. So for laughs lets say we could win all three. While not out of the realm of possibility realistically I'll say the first two games are for the Tribe to lose. Oh and by the way Detroit is now in third place in the AL Central.

Go Tribe!

(AP Photo/Mark Duncan)

6 comments:

Andy said...

I went to the game Friday and that was exactly the frustratingly inept offense that dug them this hole to start with. The most exciting part of the game was a dispute I had with a guy after his son flipped a peanut at me and I put it down his shirt. "Stop talking" was the last thing I said to him, shortly after he threatened to fight me.

Game 2 was not televised because Fox is run by monkeys, and I couldn't listen via Internet radio because Time Warner is run by little girls.

Choo is a monster - OPS+ of 126. Quickly becoming a fan favorite as well. Who doesn't like the Big League Choo?

Crap! Boobs! Crap!
Having attended the game, I still cannot capture the game any more eloquently than this. I will say that our percentages were:
Mike 18%
Andy 11.6%
Nick 7%

davemanddd said...

when you have a 10-game winning streak going, you don't upset the apple cart by bringing back your injured catcher for the first time in a couple of months and then designating a useful player like andy gonzalez 3 days before you can expand your rosters anyway. it was bad enough that they brought victor back, but did they have to put him at 1b and put david de-douche-bag at dh all the while sitting down 2 of their most instrumental players in their success during said 10-game streak in the ben francisco treat and ryan garko??? the least eric "the genius" wedge could have done was put victor at dh and ease him back in the lineup and that would have allowed them to at least still keep garko's bat in the lineup. to make matters worse, they kept victor out of the lineup saturday and then put him back in at first base on sunday where he promptly made a very critical error during seattle's 5-run 5th inning. don't get me wrong now. i would much prefer to have a healthy victor in the lineup as long as it's victor circa 2004-2007 and not the shell of his former self that we have seen all this year. just because he spent 8 games on a minor league rehab assignment doesn't mean he's ready to play again, as evidenced by his not being in the lineup on saturday. by the way, he hit all of 1 home run during his rehab stint. yeah, he was ready to come back all right. speaking of which, i thought those rehab deals were supposed to last 20 games??? anyway, i don't think it's just a coincidence that the return of the offense from hell just happened to coincide with victor's return. he was part of the problem earlier and has came back to be part of the problem once again. a singles-hitting victor who is unable to drive the ball deep is of little or no value to this team. just like christopher walken needs more cowbell, the indians need more power. the hallmark of the 10-game winning streak was the tribe was hitting the longball quite a bit. in the 3-game sweep at the hands of the mariners, they hit one measly home run by shin-soo choo and they needed that one just to avoid getting shutout and losing in regulation on saturday. in a season chock-filled with dumb decisions, starting with standing pat in the off-season, you can add one more dumb decision to the list now.

Andy said...

I disagree with most of what this commenter has written.

when you have a 10-game winning streak going, you don't upset the apple cart by bringing back your injured catcher for the first time in a couple of months and then designating a useful player like andy gonzalez 3 days before you can expand your rosters anyway
The 10-gamer was nice, but these months are for getting ready for 2009. The "injured catcher" happens to be Victor Martinez, who is (a) not injured anymore and (b) figures far more prominently in the team's future plans than Gonzalez.

it was bad enough that they brought victor back, but did they have to put him at 1b and put david de-douche-bag at dh all the while sitting down 2 of their most instrumental players in their success during said 10-game streak in the ben francisco treat and ryan garko???
Putting him at 1B I understand; sitting Francisco while Dellucci bats makes no sense to me.

the least eric "the genius" wedge could have done was put victor at dh and ease him back in the lineup and that would have allowed them to at least still keep garko's bat in the lineup.
Garko has an OPS+ of 82 on the year. I'm not too worried about losing his bat for a while.

to make matters worse, they kept victor out of the lineup saturday and then put him back in at first base on sunday where he promptly made a very critical error during seattle's 5-run 5th inning
Better now than next year. Think long term!

don't get me wrong now. i would much prefer to have a healthy victor in the lineup as long as it's victor circa 2004-2007 and not the shell of his former self that we have seen all this year.
So would everybody. That's why he's playing now - to see how he's progressed.

just because he spent 8 games on a minor league rehab assignment doesn't mean he's ready to play again, as evidenced by his not being in the lineup on saturday
What are you, the head trainer? He hit a home run last night.

speaking of which, i thought those rehab deals were supposed to last 20 games???
I don't think it's a set number - it depends on the player and injury. It's not like the Tribe is just doing this randomly.

anyway, i don't think it's just a coincidence that the return of the offense from hell just happened to coincide with victor's return
You're wrong. Baseball has its ups and downs - they lost those games by 1, 1, and 2 runs. They scored 9 last night with him in the lineup.

a singles-hitting victor who is unable to drive the ball deep is of little or no value to this team
How can you tell all this from two games? You must be the most astute baseball observer in the world. If we don't see any progress in a month, then we can fret.

the hallmark of the 10-game winning streak was the tribe was hitting the longball quite a bit.
also a high OBP, but yes

in the 3-game sweep at the hands of the mariners, they hit one measly home run by shin-soo choo and they needed that one just to avoid getting shutout and losing in regulation on saturday.
Choo also hit one on Sunday, but are you somehow blaming the failure of Sizemore, Gutierrez, Shoppach, Cabrera, and the rest of the lineup to hit home runs on...Martinez?

in a season chock-filled with dumb decisions, starting with standing pat in the off-season,
Hindsight is 20-20. Who would you have overpaid for, horse trader? Everyone thought they were primed to win 90 games and if not for a rash of injuries, a bullpen implosion, and two months of offensive regression that no one anticipated, they would have contended.

you can add one more dumb decision to the list now.
Someone make this guy a GM.

JHH said...

I don't want to look like I'm piling on but. . .

My major disagreement is with the standing-pat during the offseason. At the time I thought it was one of weaknesses of the team, but time has softened my view. Look Detroit has depleted their prospects for what, fourth place and a $100 Million payroll.

It’s not like the front office just took the winter off. They tried to make trades but the asking price was too high, like Cliff Lee for Quentin.

No one predicted or could predict this kind of regression.

davemanddd said...

yeah, you're piling on. i was merely trying to express my own frustration with the tribe having their 10-game winning streak ended by a last place team and it just so happened to coincide with the return of victor martinez. don't you remember all the vitriol that was spewing on cleveland sports blogs the day after the indians traded for jamey carroll??? it wasn't the greatest timing after what detroit had done just the day before when they traded for miguel cabrera and dontrelle willis. you would have thought that carroll was the 2nd coming of the anti-christ. that being said, i just wish the tribe would have waited a couple more days to re-activate victor. call me crazy for being superstitious, but when you got a 10-game winning streak going, you just gotta stick with the ones that brought you to that point. by introducing an unknown quantity into the equation like a player just coming back from an injury, i don't care who it would be, either victor, pronk, or babe ruth, you really just don't know what to expect. just look at fausto's first start after he came back off the disabled list. vomitous. as i said before, the least eric "the genius" wedge could have done was put victor at dh and work him back into the lineup slowly, but by immediately putting him at first base coupled with david de-douche-bag at dh while sitting both garko and the ben francisco treat down, wedge pretty much tossed caution to the wind and we all felt that wind when de-douche-bag struck out with runners in scoring position and less than 2 outs in each of his first 2 at-bats in friday's game. i just had to laugh when he finally got a hit leading off the 7th inning. whoopee!!! as for your criticism of garko, the last time i checked he is still 3rd on the team in rbi's and has really stepped it up here lately. as for your thinking long term, i guess i can appreciate that. at the same time, who's to say the tribe can't become this year's version of the colorado rockies and win 20 of their last 29 games and actually make the playoffs this year??? it sure would have helped had they not gift-wrapped 3 straight wins to the mariners in which they went 3-for-29 with runners in scoring position during that series. yes, it's a small sample size, but the same goes for victor hitting his first home run of the year, so to criticize me on one hand only to point out an even smaller sample size of a single home run as proof of victor being all the way back from his injury, is bordering on hypocritical, don't you think??? as for me being a general manager, i would much rather stick to being just a fan, thank you.

JHH said...

Dave,

I for one appreciate at least your comments. I think we can all agree there is enough frustration with this year to go around.

But I hate dwelling on it. That's not to say questioning decisions made by the owners and operators of our sports teams is a bad thing.