Sunday, April 28, 2013

Let's Play Two!

Double header today! Awesome, awesome way to spend my birthday. Of course, that is not what I was thinking about 2/3 of the way through the first game. I was like "Oh man, I hope I don't have to endure two of these routings today..." but much to my JOY the second game was oh-so-much better and my birthday ended on a high note!

Justin Masterson started the first game and I'm sure that you, like me, had high hopes for that one. Because as Andre Knott said it seems like our starting rotation is becoming "Justin Masterson and pray for rain" (Hey! Stop praying for rain!) Even with Sweet Meryl looking on from last night, Justin didn't really have it all together today. He DID strike out 9 and he DID go 6 1/3 innings. But in that time he gave up 7 earned runs including a homer (solo, thank goodness). Terry Francona and Jim Rosenhaus asserted that he didn't actually look bad out there, things just went bad for him. He did give up two runs and had a wild pitch in the 7th before he was taken out, so he ended on a sour note. But heck, he's Justin Masterson - if we can't believe in him we're out of starters to believe in. So I still look forward to his next start.

Speaking of Meryl Masterson, the Indians have not lost a night game since she showed up here. Granted, they have only played five games in total since then but the three of them that were played at night, they won. Just sayin'!
You bet your sweet bippy she's staying!
Matt Albers came in to finish the 7th and he was fine. Looks like he's going to be another fine reliever for us. Just fine.

Scott Barnes, who was tapped as our Special Double Header Day 26th Man was not so fine, giving up 2 runs in the 8th in the form of a 2-run homer after a walk. So there's that. Ok see you next month, Scott Barnes!

Of course all of that is moot because there was no hitting support in the afternoon game. There were 8 hits total with 10 strikeouts. Yowza! There was only one hit or one walk in every inning. In one inning they got one hit AND one walk - and a double play. And in the 7th things heated up with TWO hits and then...nothing.

HOWEVER - the story of the first game is Asdrubal Cabrera! He was on FIRE today going 3 for 4 with a double and no errors! I am guessing that he was inspired not only by my birthday but his son Meyer (of the famous Meyer & Ashley) being at the park today. There's a couple pictures of them up on the Tribe instagram, like this one. And here's two more.
Sign him up - as a lucky charm!
If having his son around gives Asdrubal this sort of boost, I hope Meyer is immediately taken out of school and given a permanent seat on the team bench. Our pitchers can educate him between starts!

Carlos Santana is still kicking ass and taking names. His average went up to .355 after the first game where he went 2 for 4 with a double! He did strike out twice, but oh well - he is totally legit!

Ryan Raburn got a hit, and Lonnie Chisenhall had a much better game than Friday and went 2 for 4 himself. I think maybe he is relaxing and not trying to crush the ball every time - which he can do but he's got to start with the basics first. He's up to .234.

That's it for hitting! Sorry, sorry stuff - all those hits got left on base. But oh well...Sundays have never been our strong day.

But wait! The second game was like a complete 180! Of course the Royals did a 180 as well, giving up 4 un-earned runs on 3 errors, but whatever. We won by SEVEN runs so we could take or leave the un-earned ones!

Corey Kluber was called in to action as the starter for the second game. He'd only pitched 5 innings this year - one inning in relief on 4/17 then four in relief on 4/20 when Scott Kazmir caught The Awfulz. Turns out Kluber is awesome, or at least was awesome at pitching past a tired Kansas City team. Whatever the case he went 7 innings only giving up 2 runs and striking out 6. And no walks! AND NO HOME RUNS! Just a few doubles and a few singles and that was it. Is he our 5th starter now that Myers is hurt? I hope so!

Being that Kluber had such a lovely game we were treated to the 7-8 punch of Vinnie and Perez. BAM! Actually, not so bam - Vinnie gave up two walks right out of the gate, and then a single to load the bases and a run on a sac fly. But that was it and he's our golden boy so you just be quiet!

Chris Perez tried to be cool and catch a come-backer with his bare hand, and he shook it off but I hope that was a smart decision and not something we're going to hear about in August. He got the out, by the way - then he struck out the next two suckers.
You can't see me!
According to the radio guys (speaking of which, I heard tell that people were pissed that the game wasn't on TV - hope you all listened on the radio!) the clubhouse was just dead silent inbetween games. Everyone was embarrassed or something. They should be! But whatever quiet reflection happened there seems to have WORKED because the guys got 14 hits and scored 10 runs! YES!

Almost everybody hit, except Drew Stubbs, which is actually weird because he's been one of the most consistent dudes on the team as far as getting at least one hit most nights. But hey, he hustles down the baseline and makes every play close so at least he's got that going for him.

Brantley is still in leadoff. Bourn reportedly was throwing today during practice. Brantley went 2 for 4! Sadly he had ended his hitting streak at 5 by not getting a hit in the afternoon game but there's a lot more where that came from, I'm sure!

Asdrubal got bumped up to the 2-spot, with Kipnis being benched for Aviles. Asdrubal added two more hits to his tally for today going 2 for 5 in this evening game - with a TRIPLE! It was an RBI triple! So he ended up going 5 for 9 today on my birthday - awesome!! His average is FINALLY over .200 now at .208. Is this it??

Swisher had a good night batting third. He went 1 for 3 with a walk and was the beneficiary of two errors! He hit a sacrifice fly to get an RBI, and came around twice to score.

Mark Reynolds hasn't hit a home run in a week! But he did go 2 for 5 today and only struck out once.

Carlos Santana - holy smokes is he on a tear! He went 4 for 5 tonight, bringing his average up to .388. At this moment, right now, he leads all of baseball with that average. He went 6 for 9 today! With all the problems he had last year did you think he was going to be this consistent this year? Nobody really seems to be talking too much about it - because I don't think anyone believes it! Boy is it going to be huge for this team he can keep this up and his teammates can support around him.

'Cuz you know who's not hitting anywhere close to .388 right now? Victor Martinez, that's who. Go 'Los!

Speaking of Puerto Ricans (I wasn't) how about Mike Aviles and his red-letter day?! He was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed for the evening game, and showed everyone by getting FIVE RBI!  He somehow managed to get all those RBI off just one hit - a 3-run dinger in the third. His other two RBI were from a ground out with runners on base and a sacrifice fly. This team is in desperate need of hits but we can also use at-bats like those - getting the bat on the ball and putting it in play with runners in scoring position. Well done, Aviles! Well done!

It took Ryan Raburn forever to get a hit, but he finally got one in the 9th, going 1 for 5 on the day. Yan Gomes - who is up for Marson, who is just not able to shake off the beating he got - only went 1 for 5 but he got a triple which was his second triple in just 7 appearances with the team (22 at-bats). Poor Lou...he's not doing too good and his replacement is awesome. I promise I won't make a Yan Gomes Gleemer, Lou!
Thanks, pal.
I already told you about Drew Stubbs, who didn't have too good of a game. Oh well - we won!

So we had a super great game in the evening to wipe away the nastiness of the afternoon game and the game the night before. We've got 3 more games before a break so hopefully they keep this momentum going!

Tomorrow they play the Royals one more time, at 8:10. It'll be Ubaldo versus RHP 3.20. Honestly I don't even know what to predict about this team anymore. All I can do is hope!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"If you're a minor-leaguer, there's no such thing as a direct flight."
- Tom Hamilton

"I know that Tim Belcher loves the powder-blue uniforms because they match his pretty blue eyes."
- Tom Hamilton

"The Indians locker room was as quiet as a church on Sunday morning, after the first game."
- Tom Hamilton

"You can't get away with mistakes on the strike zone, especially when you throw in the mid 80s."
- Tom Hamilton on Bruce Chen

"It's like you can't even apply to be on this Royals club unless you throw 95."
- Tom Hamilton

"Boy this guy is like hugging a cactus. He sometimes is all about Billy Butler and sometimes that gets him into trouble with his team."
"Have you ever hugged a cactus?"
"Oh yeah. At 2 or 3 in the morning. It certainlly wakes you up quick!"
"You don't want to do that in daylight."
- Tom Hamilton and Jim Rosenhaus

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