First off, Much congrats to Melissa http://clemsongirlbaseball.mlblogs.com/ for cracking the top 10 in the MLBlogoshpere! if you didn’t see, her pic was featured on the MLBlogs main page! Ironically, Her pic was next to MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, who’s own MLBlog inspired me to make this one! Coincidence?
This weekend, The Tribe started interleauge play vs. the Reds for the “Ohio Cup.” What’s the Ohio Cup? I have no idea… It’s the first time I’ve heard of it and I’ve followed this series since interleague play started in 1997! But, whatever. I do know that the Indians went into Cincinnati after winning two vs. KC to face their NL counterpart, The Reds.
In game 1, Grady give us early hope. After going 1-for-14 in the four game before Friday’s, Sizemore went 2-for-4 with a 1st inning homer and did a good job in the outfield. The lead didn’t last long though as the Reds responded when Phillips hit sacrifice fly to left in their half of the 1st.
Just when I started to think the starting pitching was getting better…Anthony Reyes proves me wrong… again. He walked six batters and hit another in only three innings on work. Still, He did only allow the one run in the 1st, so maybe there is hope…
Of course, the Bullpen blew it again in the 8th with Laffey giving up 2-runs to give the Reds a 3-2 win. But overall, I was OK with this loss. I mean, it wasn’t like they lost by 5 or 6. Your gonna have games like this where you just can’t pull out the win. I give the Tribe credit on this one. They really kept it close.
Game 2 went a little better. After the Reds scored on a homer in the 1st, Mark DeRosa responded with a 2-run long ball of is own! Add Cabrera’s 2-run RBI Single and after 1 1/2 innings the Tribe have a three point lead…
…which David Huff quickly blew after giving up two more home runs making the score CLE 4 CIN 6 after 2 innings. *sigh*
But the game wasn’t over! DeRosa hit a 2-run RBI single to tie in the 5th and Cabrera hit the game winning RBI on a sac-grounder in the 8th to give the Indians a 7-6 win! DeRosa did alot to get this win, so did Choo. He went 2-for-3 with a run and some great catches in left that could of killed us in the end if they weren’t made.
Lee got the start in game 3 and did pretty well only giving up 2-runs in 6 innings. His ERA is hovering around 3.00 now. And I don’t know what it is with Grady in the #2 spot, but it’s working! He went 2-for-4 with a RBI and a Triple that may as well be called a Inside-The-Park Homer as he was able to score on a throwing error to tie the game at 3-3.
The Tribe did all they could but ended up losing in the 11th when Alex Gonzalez it the game-winning RBI double. But even though we lost this series 2 games to 1, I ok with it. The Indians keep all the games close and you really can’t place blame on anyone or anything other than these just being though-luck loses.
The good thing about this series was it gave Hafner a chance to improve his swing in the minors seeing how there’s no DH in NL games. From what I’ve heard he’s hit a few Homers and RBI’s playing down in Columbus.
Reyes and Laffey were placed on the DL after game 1. Even though they haven’t gotten the job done, we really can’t afford to lose any more pitching…
Overall, we might not have won this series, but I’m happy with how they did.
Just remember Tribe, Next time we see the Reds… It’ll be in an AL ballpark. Ours.
Oh Hell Yeah!
After game heartbreaking loss yesterday afternoon (which was caused only caused by a home plate ump who didn’t know what a ball or strike is…) The Indians showed the Yankee fans just what a brand new, $1.5 Billion dollar, state-of-the-art stadium can get them.
Before really getting into the game itself, after the past three games, I think it’s safe to say that the New Yankee Stadium is DEFINITELY a hitter’s ballpark. At least 3 home runs a game have happened thus far and winds are carrying pop-flies over the wall in right field. I want to see what happens later in the season and see if all the games here will turn into a home run derby.
Now, on to today’s game! I was little worried about Carmona after that 2-run home run Teixeira hit in the 1st. But, he calmed down, got out of the inning and the Tribe’s offense did the rest! Carmona then did his part by going 4 scoreless innings and finally going 6 full only giving up another 2 runs.
I think it’s safe to say that this one was over in the 2nd. Why? 14 runs in one inning! The Indians beat up on Chien-Ming Wang like he was a rented mule! Then went on to beat up the guy who relived him! I can’t help but feel bad for Wang though. He only lasted 1/3 inning longer than his last start. He (and the rest of baseball) knows he’s better than that.
Now, without going over EVERY run scored for the Tribe in this one, I’ll just do a quick recap of the home runs…
Shin-Soo Choo: 3-Run Home Run into the Indians bullpen in left in 2nd.
Asdrubal Cabrera: Grand Slam to Right Center in 2nd.
Grady Sizemore: Solo Shot to Right in 2nd. (right after Cabrera’s)
Mark DeRosa: 3-Run Home Run into the Indians bullpen in left in 5th.
Victor Martinez: Solo Shot to Right in 5th. (right after DeRosa’s)
Travis Hafner: Solo Shot to Left in 8th.
Bottom Line: 13 Runs out of 22 scored off of 6 Home Runs!
Overall, a good game… 😀
I am a little worried about tomorrow. It’ll be Pavano vs. Burnett so New York as the advantage. But who knows? Maybe this big win will give us the motivation to play like we used to…
But today’s game will be like the 22-0 victory we had vs the Yanks in 2004…
One we will always remember.
5:05 CLE 10 NYY 2 – Final: DOUBLE PLAY!!! BALLGAME!!! The Tribe needed this win! The fact the it was against the Yankees makes it even sweeter!
5:00 Bot 9th: Betancourt loads the bases with 1 out…
4:44 Mid 9th: Only three outs to go!
4:37 Top 9th: Infield single by Graffanino.
4:34 End 8th: NICE GRAP BY PERALTA!
4:33 Bot 8th: Another K for Perez.
4:24 Mid 8th: Tribe goes down 1-2-3 in the 8th.
4:17 End 7th: Perez gets his first strikeout of the season and gets out of the inning with only one run against him…
4:14 Bot 7th: Cano hits a RBI single to left. 10-2 Tribe.
4:10 Bot 7th: Perez not finding to zone again. Betancourt in the bullpen.
4:01 Top 7th: VICTOR MARTINEZ HOMERS TO LEFT!!! 10-1 TRIBE!!!
3:57 Top 7th: GRADY SIZEMORE HITS A GRAND SLAM TO CENTER!!!! 9-1 TRIBE!!!
3:53 Top 7th: SHOPPACH SINGLES TO RIGHT! PERALTA SCORES! 4-1 TRIBE!
3:48 Top 7th: PERALTA HIT A DOUBLE TO RIGHT FIELD! DEROSA AND MARTINEZ SCORE! 3-1 TRIBE!
3:44 Top 7th: Martinez doubles to right. DeRose to 3rd, No Out.
3:40 End 6th: Lee FINALLY puts down the Yanks 1-2-3. We’ll likely see Perez next inning.
3:37 Bot 6th: Rafal Perez warming up in the Indians buulpen.
3:33 Mid 6th: Grady flies out to center. Another scoring chance missed…
3:29 Top 6th: Safe at 2nd! Bases Loaded for the Tribe with 2 outs! New pitcher coming out for the Yankees.
3:27 Top 6th: Error saves Tribe. 2-on, 2-out
3:22 Top 6th: C.C. finally strikes out Shoppach and is taken out after 122 and 4 K’s
3:11 End 5th: Lee gets a force out but Yanks homer to tie up the game at 1.
3:02 Bot 5th: Posada hit a solo Home Run to Center Field. Game tied 1-1
3:00 Bot 5th: Two K’s in a row!
2:59 Bot 5th: Great strikeout by Lee for the first out of the 5th.
2:55 Mid 5th: C.C. escapes with another strikeout.
2:52 Top 5th: Vic with a cluch hit with 2 out. C.C. over 100 pitches.
2:47 Top 5th: Sizemore thrown out stealing 2nd but DeRosa get a base hit.
2:41 Top 5th: Crowe kept swinging away but should of just taken that last pitch…
2:37 End 4th: GREAT PITCH! Lee survives again!
2:35 Bot 4th: Bases loaded for Damon with 2 outs…
2:33 Bot 4th: Wild pitch moves runners to 2nd and 3rd…
2:29 Bot 4th: Lee walks his first batter on a pitch that could of gone either way.
2:21 Top 4th: TRIBE SCORE FIRST RUN IN NEW YANKEE STADIUM! SHOPPACH WITH A RBI DOUBLE! 1-0 INDIANS!
2:19 Top 4th: Close but no cigar, Jhonny…
2:14 Top 4th: Jhonny gets a leadoff double to start the 4th inning for the Tribe.
2:11 End 3rd: What is with batters on BOTH teams swinging at pitches WAY OUTSIDE of the zone?
2:06 Bot 3rd: Vic’s getting better at first base! I’m surprised he tried that play.
2:01 Mid 3rd: I blame DeRosa for that pop-out/throw-out double play… He had more than enough time to get back and just froze.
1:56 Top 3rd: Grady and DeRosa walk back-to-back. C.C. keeps on throwing into the dirt today.
1:49 End 2nd: Leadoff hit for the Yanks but Lee gets his first K or the game.
1:42 Mid 2nd: C.C. ends the the 2nd like he did the 1st — with a strikeout.
1:37 Top 2nd: Francisco hits a 2-out double to left field.
1:29 End 1st: So far, so good! I don’t think that bean was Lee’s fault… But he get’s out of the 1st with no damage done.
1:23: Bot 1st: Lee Beans Teixeira. Don’t fall apart now, Cliff!
1:21 Bot 1st: The first hit in the new park goes to NYY
1:20 Bot 1st: That was cool that they brought out Babe Ruth’s bat for a little tribute.
1:16: Mid 1st: C.C. seems to be having problems finding the strike zone but gets a swinging K to end the inning.
1:15 Top 1st: DeRosa’s bat must of broke because he hit that ball harder than it traveled…
1:06 Pregame: I ended up missing almost all of the pregame show because the fire alarm went off here at the station… Got back in just in time to see the start of the game.
It’s Game Time! Tribe @ Yanks in the New Yankee Stadium with the last 2 AL Cy Young winners on the mound! This should be fun to watch! I hoping for a game like a few years ago… lol
Finally, another win! After a ‘close-but-no-cigar’ loss on Friday and another bullpen collapse last night, this was much needed.
Sizemore had a great game, going 2-for-4 with a RBI to give the Tribe the lead which they kept for most of the game. My olny fault with his performance today is the he shouldn’t of tried to steal home on that wild pitch. There was NO chance that he was going to be safe unless the ump was blind. C’mon Grady! You know better than that!
The starting pitching and the bullpen are slowly but surely getting better. Aaron Laffey just pitched the best game of any starter thus far. The scary thing about that? He was only bought up to fill in for the injured Scott Lewis who is on the 15-day DL. Laffey went 5 1/3 innings and 5 K’s in the no decision while his relief Jensen Lewis (1-0) issued three straight walks in the bottom of the seventh but still got the win.
DeRosa now has a 5-game hit streak going and had a RBI single today. Pronk went 2-for-3 with a RBI and a run. And Wood got his first save of the season and as a Cleveland Indian. Overall, a very well played and entertaining game.
The Indians may have lost the first two games, but they’re starting the click on what needs to be worked on to win. The offense is good. The defense on the field is good. The starting rotation is (slowly) getting better. So it seems the bullpen is the main problem to focus on. This game today almost went into extras today because of a KC homer if it wasn’t for a Royal trying to turn a single into a double and getting thrown out at 2nd. The bullpen is giving up WAY to many runs and the the trends of the starters continue, we can kiss any hope of seeing the Postseason goodbye…
But, I’m going to stay optimistic. I believe the Tribe now knows how to win and is ready for the Yankees and whatever the fans have for them in the New Yankee Staduim. Tomorrow, we’ll have a battle of the last two AL Cy Young winners! Lee vs Sabathia. I’ll be doing a live MLBlog of the game tomorrow so be tuned in for that.
Until then, let’s just sit back and enjoy today’s win, Tribe… The guys on the field deserve it.
[EDIT] OH! I forgot to mention, today was Jackie Robinson Day across Major Leauge Baseball. It was nice to see most, if not all of the players today wear #42 in tribute to the man who helped change the game for better.
Ok… I won’t lie to you, Tribe. After the 2nd inning of today’s game, I was in search of that ‘Panic Button’ I was talking about on Opening Day. I mean, I had my doubts on Carl Pavano starting today but… down 9-1 at the end of the 2ND?! DAMN!
What is it with our staring pitching so far? I can give Cliff Lee some slack for his performance. After all, He was struck by a line drive just above his throwing elbow right before he let four 2-out runs get on the board. So what was Carmona’s and Pavano’s deal? Nerves? Or was it that we just really didn’t know how to stop the Texas hitters?
Whatever the reason, Zach Jackson did his best to get try and get us out of the hole. He’s not anywhere near taking over a starting job. But, a few more games as the long man and we could see some great things from him in the future.
The good news is for the second game in a row, the Indians didn’t just just lay down and die like they did in game 1. The bats finally came alive today with 5, yes FIVE, home runs from the Tribe in hopes of getting back into the game. Grady Sizemore hit two 2-run homers, but also struckout three times. It seems as if Victor’s slump may have been snapped as he hit also homered and Pronk hit the ball so hard in the 9th it may as well had made it half way to China is the stands weren’t in the way! Kelly Shoppach was also able to touch-’em-all today
I’ll bet if they had to play one more game vs Texas, Cleveland would of won…
Bottom Line: Texas came into this opening series ready to play… we weren’t. And by the time we were, The Rangers already knew our weak points. I have faith that the next time we let that happen won’t be for a EVERY long time.
Also, It was nice to see Omar Vizquel on the field again. I miss him here in Cleveland.
The Tribe FINALLY comes home to Progressive Field (aka “The Jake”) tomorrow for a weekend series against the Blue Jays. We’ll have Scott Lewis on the mound who had a 2.63 ERA last year. Will he fair better than our last three starters? If the Indians do their job at the plate, I think so. But, just remember… Offense scores runs, but pitching wins games.
Last time the Cleveland Indians went 0-3 to start a season, they when on to win close to 100 games that year. Once when the Yankees went 0-3, they won the ALCS… Maybe getting swept on the road to start off wasn’t the way we wanted to begin the 2009 season, but at least we know it’s not the end of it… and that we get to come home tomorrow.
Tomorrow’s a new day, Tribe. A new game. A Home Opener…
Tomorrow is Opening Day again…
Let’s make it count!
(PS: I’ll be trying to do a LIVE MLBlog tomorrow! I’ll be updating throughout the Home Opener with my thoughts and opinions about every inning or so, or whenever a big play happens. I’ll start posting about half-a-hour to an hour before the game. Be sure to check it out!)
I’ll likely go into full detail into what I think about this year’s team later this week. (I like to see or listen to a few games before I can truly give my opinions on things like this.) So, before the Tribe’s Opening Day game, here are my thoughts on the 2009 Cleveland Indians!
Grady Sizemore: I don’t think he’ll have another Gold Glove year, but he’ll deffinitly do his job in the outfield as well as in the batter’s box. I think if the #8 and #9 hitters do their work, Grady could make a run for the RBI Title.
Mark DeRosa: Sizemore’s finally getting the help he needs as the leadoff man. He played great in the WBC with a .316 AVG and I think he’ll stay hot throughout most of the MLB season and give the Indians a push when they need it. This guy is our new Casey Blake.
Victor Martinez: I’m not sure about Vic… I’m not 100% sold on the fact that shifting him to 1st base is a good thing. I think he’ll have a much better year at bat, but not knowing where he’ll be defenseivly through most of the season worries me a little.
Travis Hafner: I believe Pronk will have a much better year as well. As long as he stays healthy, he’ll snap out of his slump. I also think shifting Hafner to 1st and puting Vic at DH for part of the season is a better choice… But so far, every time I say that I get confused looks from everybody so, maybe I’m just crazy.
Jhonny Peralta: I don’t really have much to say about Peralta. I just think He’ll have a year just like last and could be in talks for the Shortstop Gold Glove. (But likely won’t win it.)
Shin-Soo Choo: I’ve always liked this guy for some reason I just can’t seem to place my finger on… The Tribe was a little worried about him in the WBC while hurt, but he played great for Korea continued to play well in Spring Training. Expect a lot of base hits and home runs from “Big League Choo” this season.
Kelly Shoppach: Maybe Shoppach’s a better choice at 1st than Victor… I don’t know. This is another guy I have little to no opinion or predictions on. I just wish Eric Wedge knew what to do at Catcher.
Ben Francisco: I think Ben will do OK. I just see more defense rather than offense coming from him.
Asdrubal Cabrera: Remember that Unassisted triple play he pulled off last season? It’s a bit of a stretch to say that he’ll pull something like that off again, But I think it’s save to say that the Indians are good at 2nd base.
Cliff Lee: I honestly believe that last year’s Cy Young winning season was a fluke for Lee. Not to say he won’t have a good year this year, but if you’re looking for him to pull off another 20+ win season, you’re crazy. I think he’ll get somewhere between 15 and 18 wins this year.
Fausto Carmona: This kid has what it takes if he could just learn to settle his nerves. I think he’ll finally figure that out this year. I can see him getting at least 14 wins this season.
Kerry Wood: I’m not going to lie… when ESPNews broke the story that Wood was traded to Cleveland, I got the biggest grin on my face! He is the final piece to our bullpen puzzle. Wood can definitely get the most saves in the AL this year.
Final Thoughts: After our heartbreak in 2007 and the disappointing season last year, I think we really have a chance this year if the Tribe can stay healthy. The AL central will be a battle between the Tribe and the Twins… with whoever coming in second winning the Wild Card.
Bottom Line: The Indians have what it takes and the tools to win. Our road to a World Series starts now!
Man, I can’t till tomorrow!
IT’S TRIBE TIME NOW!