Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Don't Blink!

Do not blink!
This rarely happens to me, since I'm usually glued to the radio for the entirety of a game, but today I had one of those classic baseball moments when you turn away from the game for a few minutes and the next thing you know the score is vastly different than when you last looked up. It was 3-1 when I left the car radio in order to pick up my dog. By the time I visited with my folks for a minute and got the dog in to the car, Justin Masterson was being escorted from the field with a towel over his head by large men wearing sunglasses and earpieces (not really).

Ugly stuff, man. A tale of two games, really - one game that was the first six innings, in which Masterson gave up 3 hits, no walks, one run and fanned 7. Then there was that game that unfolded in the 7th, after Masterson hit a guy, gave up a homer, walked a guy, gave up a single, threw a wild pitch and gave up a 3-run homer. All of that in one inning. Ouch.

We'll give it to Masterson, because he's been tight for us this year - heck he was tight the first 6 innings! But the biggest question is...is it mechanical or mental? Mental, fine. Have an off inning. Mechanical? Noooooo! Be healthy, bro!

Time will tell, I guess. Or Terry will tell, tomorrow.

Fun fact: Alexi Casilla, who got the 3-run homer (Masterson's last pitch), had one homer last year, and hasn't hit another until today. The last guy off whom he hit a homer? Justin Masterson.

Hagadone and Albers came in to finish the game and I like to think they were humbled by the implosion of their leader, and did everything they could to not look like idiots and give up more dumb runs through the 9th. They did good, not giving up any runs and no hits. As it should be.

The Tribe's hitters weren't really wowing them in Baltimore today, either. They had a lot of chances wasted again today - 6 hits and 6 walks, and 7 left on base. Six walks!

The top of the order was doing all the work today, but still it wasn't much good work. Bourn was back on the hit horse but it was too little too late - just 1 for 5 today with no walks. His hit was a double.

Aviles broke an 0-for-16 slide and got a hit, going 1 for 3 today with a sac bunt.

Jason Kipnis is still...dang, dude! Two more hits for the Kid today! A single and a 2-run homer. He's still over .400 for June, and his slugging for June is .638. That's higher than Ortiz and Cabrera in June, and 10 points shy of Davis in June. His slugging for the last 7 days is 1.053 - 100 points higher than Chris Davis and everyone else in the league.


Oh, if only Nick Swisher, batting after Kipnis and all of Kipnis' doubles, were playing like we paid him a bazillion dollars to play for our team!

Carlos Santana is slipping down in to lower average territory again. Michael Brantley didn't get a hit but at least he got himself another sac fly RBI.

Reynolds and Chisenhall both got hits, and they even put something together (a walk followed by a single). But they they both got out a bunch more, and ultimately Chisenhall left the team in a lurch by GIDP in the 9th with two men on. Ho hum.

That was it, man. Brantley with the sac, Kipnis with the bomb and a lot of dudes left on base. Another case of "Who lost it?" I think - after all, Masterson only put them 3 runs down, and the bullpen miraculously held it. I think it's all Nick Swisher's fault.

Tomorrow is the rubber match in sticky sticky Baltimore. Kazmir versus RHP 5.30, which is an ERA similar to his. Make sure to tune in - and don't blink!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"These are the kind of opportunities that come back to haunt you later in the game if you don't capitalize early."
- Tom Hamilton on Aviles' at-bat in the 2nd

"That's why in Baltimore they say 'Miguel who?' Chris Davis, in their minds, is every bit as good as Miguel Cabrera."
- Tom Hamilton

"Let's face it - that's not Johnny Bench behind the plate."
- Tom Hamilton on Carlos Santana

"Who ever saw this inning coming?"
- Tom Hamilton after the 7th

"I think anybody who gambles has a couple of screws loose anyway...but to gamble on baseball you're out of your mind."
- Tom Hamilton

"This guy walks by you in the cluhouse and you get sunburn."
- Tom Hamilton on Jason Kipnis

"Oh boy - here's Babe Ruth."
- Tom Hamilton on Chris Davis

"Can you imagine - the young catcher from Aruba who got to catch Chris Perez? That's the thrill of a lifetime."
- Tom Hamilton on Perez's rehab game in Mahoning Valley

"At age 42, he still gets pitched to as if he's 22."
- Tom Hamilton on Jason Giambi

"The fans are out of their seats, those who can get out of their seats and aren't sticking to them in this heat."
- Tom Hamilton

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