Monday, April 8, 2013

Can't Spell Ubaldo Without "U Bad"

Happy Home Opener everyone! Isn't it just awesome to see 42,000 people crammed into the stadium? How about Tom Hamilton in a tuxedo? Was someone you know, who works for Progressive, helping to hold the giant flag? Everybody's dad showed up and they let them pitch! Coverage on WTAM started early and it's the only day of the year when I'll listen to Mike Trivisonno for more than 2 minutes ("Hiroki Huroda? Huh? Is that some kind of beer?" hur dur durrrr), but there was also 92.3 The Fan to listen to and people were also downtown partying with 87.7 FM, too. People posting all over Facebook "Go Tribe!" I left work early! Terry Francona can't find the ballpark! What a day!

The team couldn't keep up with the demand to win but hey, they gave it a go. They weren't shut out like they've been a few times already. They came back from behind, they hit more homers and got some extra bases. Not too bad, really. Just...Ubaldo.

It's hard to deal with Ubaldo Jiminez anymore. I guess you could say the only thing he's consistent at is letting us down. Is it on us to not expect anything out of him and then be pleasantly surprised when he doesn't suck? But how are we supposed to not expect anything out of him when everyone who makes decisions for the team has decided that he's second best only to Justin Masterson? Why do they do this to us?

I think in order to keep this Positive I need to just not say anything about Ubaldo when he pitches other than to report that he pitched. Yeah, that sounds like a good new rule. I'll revisit it in June.

Matt Albers was the long reliever - er, middle reliever? The next guy. He went 1.2 innings and he gave up a home run too. Seeing him on TV it occurred to me that his nickname might be Fat Albers and Google says I'm right. It actually would be funnier if he was Ubaldo-shaped but alas, he's more Wickman. He hasn't impressed me yet but I'm not writing him off completely. He gave up that homer but that was it for runs.

Rich Hill came in for the 7th. Still not familiar with this dude either (he was in during the Toronto series) but of course I picture him as Rich Hall so that's kind of funny.
Not Rich Hill
What's not funny is that he gave up 3 runs. On the plus side, Cody Allen had a great 8th and Chris Perez was about to have a bad 9th but of course he got out of it because he's a stud! I liked the move where Santana muffed a pitch and it bounced over to the Tribe's dugout, with a man on 3rd. Santana was in no shape to run after the ball and Perez had the wherewithal to go fetch it before the dude scored.

Santana seems to be hurt, though. Contusion on his left thumb after he got hit with aforementioned pitch. Marson is back after being hit by a Tampa Bay outfielder, so we'll see how that plays out. Quick - who's our third-string catcher?! Ryan Raburn.
Don't worry Raburn, I got this.

So, pitching was abysmal today. No heroes until we got to the 8th and 9th innings and by then it was too late.

Travis Hafner played today. I was sort of surprised - I kind of figured he'd be a bencher over there or something. But they had a place for him and he went 2 for 3 with 4 RBI. Wut. Well whatever, good for him.

Michael Bourn is still on a roll...dude's got 11 hits in our first 7 games so far! He didn't steal any bases today for the hometown crowd but he had a nice play in the outfield and looked great running to first - he makes it close! Oh yeah and he got a triple off the wall!

I'm super stoked that Asdrubal, Kipnis and Swisher all got hits today at "the big game." Not so much because I see it as an indicator that they're about to break out (although...any day, boys!) but it's just nice to get the "test drivers" who showed up for the game today to see our stars doing stuff. Kipnis got a double! Everyone's batting over .100 now, hurrah!

I was really ready for Michael Brantley to kick some butt today, and he almost did but there was some good defense on the other end. Instead he went 1 for 5 with an RBI. He's still hitting over .300, though. Was hoping he'd rock it in front of his dad!

Harlem Shake Break!

Anyway, Santana did not get any extra bases before he left the game but he DID walk twice, going 1 for 2 on the afternoon. You know what that means right? Our scrappy little catcher is growing up! Now, let's just hope that his third ball-related injury in two days doesn't put him on the DL for very long...

Mark Reynolds was not disappointing today. He actually got a double, drove in a run and scored. He also hit two balls to the wall (heh) and made Tom Hamilton get extremely excited to call a home run. But, left field was where the wind was blowing in so they didn't get up and out. Only one strike out - a good day for Reynolds!

The Chiz Kid did not fare as well, going 0 for 3 with a walk and 2 strikeouts. Drew Stubbs didn't fare too well either, also going 0 for 3.

Mike Aviles came in to bat for Stubbs in the 8th and hit a homer! Good on ya, Mike Aviles! I really, really want that guy to be good, because I can't even remember the last time we had a quality utility guy. Who was our utility guy before anyway? LaPorta? I'd just be so excited if we can give one infielder off every day and not lose anything in the way of team batting average.

Hitting was somewhat weak today, compared to yesterday, but they stuck it out and managed to score 6 runs. Unfortunately our pitchers were basically tossing the ball over the fence so the bad guys scored 11. I don't think any of us have this team pegged yet so every day is going to be a new experience for a while.

Tomorrow is the Yankees again - the return of Carlos Carrasco versus LHP (1.13). Carrasco wasn't stellar last we saw him in 2011 but he started off ok before he had his surgery so perhaps he's better post-surgery. Also, he tried to take Billy Butler's head off in a grand retaliation and you gotta admit that's pretty awesome. He's got chutzpah, that's for sure. I wonder if Chris Perez wrote him letters while he was in rehab?

Anyway, more Yankee action in the Prog tomorrow at 7:05 (weather permitting) - See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"Asdrubal Cabrera has the baseball gods smiling on him."
- Tom Hamilton after Asdrubal's shot in the first

"If he [Santana] gets one in his wheelhouse it'll be 5-3 in a hurry."
- Tom Hamilton

"Is it April 8th or October 8th?"
- Tom Hamilton commenting on the atmosphere downtown

"Ubaldo Jiminez must be in that third base dugout thinking 'the governor just called, I got a reprieve."
- Tom Hamilton after the Tribe tied it up

"It's 4-1 Travis hafner over the Indians."
- Tom Hamilton

"Jay Z Doesn't have it that bad. If someone like Cano leaves him, he still gets to go home to Beyonce every night."
- Tom Hamilton on Robinson Cano's new agent

"The team in Boston is acting like they all just got released from prison now that Bobby Valentine is gone."
- Tom Hamilton

"We've had all 4 seasons here today at Progressive Field."
- Tom Hamilton

"Tune in this season to hear the best of Rosie, now that beers are only four dollars."
- Tom Hamilton

"There's some idiot on the field ... He'll spend the night in jail. Somewhere some mother and father are saying 'Where did we go wrong?'"
- Tom Hamilton

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