Sunday, August 10, 2014

Satisfying Conclusion

Whew! A little reprieve with good baseball to finish out the weekend. How refreshing!

The Tribe followed a crummy 4-game losing streak that included bad pitching, bad fielding and bad hitting with two games that had none of that mess. It stands to reason that they would rise up behind Kluber but they also had it all locked up for our new after-Kluber starter - Carlos Carrasco!

In his last appearance, Carrasco went 4 innings after Tomlin's bad start and he gave up 3 earned runs on 6 hits. Today he buckled down and managed 5 AWESOME innings, only giving up 2 hits, no runs, no walks and striking out 4! We'll see how this pans out going forward, and if he can start giving some length but the initial trial looks promising. If you can, try to find some interviews with this guy. He seems to be a very hard worker, very eager to learn and to fix problems, and very much a team player. Also, he beaned one of the Royals in retaliation that one time, and got a 5-day suspension. Go Cookie!

No errors today or yesterday! Except we did lose David Murphy to injury at one point. And Nick Swisher, so...

Everyone seems very excited about Jose Ramirez's fielding at shortstop. I can't imagine that everyone has plain forgotten Asdrubal's majesty out there, for at least 4 or 5 years. I'm hoping they are just happy to see some talent out there after Asdrubal's talent wore out. I'm sort of guessing we won't see Omar-/Asdrubal-level talent until Lindor is here, but Ramirez does have plenty big shoes to fill...and a plenty big role to keep to himself as long as possible!

Jason Kipnis has found IT and now is as good a time as any! While he was shut out on Saturday, today he went 3 for 5 giving him 13 hits in his last 10 games. He also stole another base today and hustled home all 3 times he got on!

Jose Ramirez had himself a game yesterday, hitting in the #8 spot. He basically won the game for the Tribe, getting his first major league home run! He went 3 for 4 with 2 RBI - which is 2/3 of the total score. He also stole a base! Today he was up in the #2 spot and managed to go 1 for 3, but it was more of a defensive show for him today than yesterday.

Brantley (.324) had a game to match Ramirez yesterday! Or, er, was it the other way around? He also went 3 for 4 and also got a homer! His 17th, of course - not his first. Today he was "on rest" as DH (because this lineup cannot function without him) and went 1 for 3, but managed 2 RBI thanks to a sac fly. He also was intentionally walked, because they're not completely stupid in New York.

Carlos Santana was shut out yesterday and today. Rut ro...

Goooooomes! No homer for him today but he did go 2 for 3 with 2 RBI today! That's half the team's RBI! Unfortunately, his hitting streak ended at 13 yesterday. I am not positive but I think that's either the team's best this year or tied with it. But he was back on the hit horse today!

Chisenhall didn't hit today, but he did yesterday. And is still hovering around .300 at .292. Please, Lonnie, PLEEEEEASE get it figured out again!

Hey, welcome Zach Walters and Tyler Holt! Can't wait to make pictures for you!
Tyler Holt!
It excites me that you're here because Swisher is gone, but also I'm happy to see as soon as possible if our trades had any merit. Immediate payoff, please!

Speaking of immediate payoff, Chris Dickerson! Well uh, no exclamation point. After his hot start with us, he's fair-to-middlin' now, batting just .243 with only 4 hits in his last 10 games. Nevertheless, he is a handsome man.

Raburn came in for Swisher yesterday and will continue to act as right fielder, I guess, until Swisher gets back. It pains me to say it but his average is below Swisher's. However, he does have half the at-bats of Swisher so he's got that to cling on to. He can only get better from here!

Now that I look at it, we've got a pretty beat-up lineup. Lots of shuffling and substituting. We need Kipnis, Brantley, Santana and Gomes to SHINE right now and hope that everyone follows suit around them. If Chisenhall can also get on that track then this team is not going to be easy to beat! They need to get their heads together before we face Baltimore next weekend. Scary!

Ok so Monday is an off day (it's also Jack's birthday!) and after that there will be a 2-game series at home versus the DBacks. Which I think I might actually attend....hmm...

Tuesday will be House versus RHP 4.09. Definitely need to take advantage of these 2 games and the miserable year the DBacks are having. So - see you there!

Radio Chatter:
"I've never seen an umpire look up at the scoreboard operator with such disdain!"
- Tom Hamilton

"Not many cab drivers are sitting in those seats."
- Tom Hamilton on the atmosphere in New Yankee Stadium where lower seats are so expensive

"I bet someone in the marketing department is like 'Uh oh...well we've got to give away these suckers.'"
- Tom Hamilton on the non-Yankee-blue cowboy hat giveaway

"It's amazing how much better your club looks when you get good starting pitching."
- Tom Hamilton

Friday, August 8, 2014

Don't Call It A Comeback

Because it wasn't! Ha!

They did come back from a 10-2 deficit to make it a manageable 10-6, but it was too little too late, I guess. I had some hope in that last inning, that maybe they'd at least get a few and make it a reasonable 10-9 but no. Swisher, yaknow?

And even with the comeback, and even if it was 10-9, it's still a big ol' L.

Twelve hits, though!

Kipnis went 2 for 4, which you really love to see because the Kid's gotta grind it out for this team to win. He got a very exciting leadoff double to start the game and we all thought good things were coming! But it didn't happen. He's got 6 hits in his last 3 games, though. He also had an error because...that bug is back.

Aviles was back in the 2-hole today. He just went 1 for 5.

Brantley (.320) was back after leaving yesterday's game with an injury. But he tells us it's not a real injury and we should just calm down. Unfortunately he messed up his hitting streak by taking away some of his at-bats yesterday but today he was back with a DOUBLE and also 2 of them for an RBI!

That 7th inning was pretty tight, with Brantley walking in a run and 'Los busting out a 2-run double. In fact he busted out of a slump by going 3 for 5 today! Oh man but does he suddenly look crappy at first. He was King Shit for a minute there. I almost wonder if the Bro is giving him some sort of bad Bro vibes since he's been relegated to a wandering outfielder.
Creepy Bro Stank Eye
David Murphy is still hot! Because I told my brother to pick up Chisenhall over him for fantasy, of course. Murph's got a 6-game hitting streak with 14 hits in his last 10 games and 7 RBI. Tonight he got 2 more RBI, because everyone was looking a little down and needed a bit of a pick-me-up. Nice try, Murphy and Jesus, but it still wasn't enough.

Chris Dickerson didn't get any hits but he did steal a catch from Swisher in the outfield. I laughed.

Roberto Perez is showing himself to be pretty solid, as they let him catch pretty regularly now to switch out Gomes. One must take good care of their Gomes if one wants their Gomes to last! Robby went 2-4 and came in to score a run.

Oh, Trevor Bauer started. Not his best start but he didn't have good defense behind him. He got 5 earned runs but should have been fewer ER for him if they had given Jeter an error instead of a hit on a dropped ball. I still like the kid, though. He's doing better with us than he was with AZ. It's like we're taming a wild stallion. Slowly!

So I dunno, a lot of people are jumping ship right now. Just prepping for the inevitable "statistically out of the race" announcement. Well, I guess if you're jumping ship because of that you weren't firmly on our boat to begin with.

OH!! I am totally stoked about the Progressive Field improvements, though! It really makes me sad that I can't get to more games. This summer has been awful for getting to games because I'm broke and my dog is sick, so even if I could/should afford to go, it's hard to get someone to stay with the dog. Next year circumstances might change - in that my parents can stay with the dog - so I hope to get there and experience all of the AWESOME!!! I am excited to see how the new bullpens look in person. Also very happy about the ballpark meeting the street at street level. What would be MOST exciting is more fans in the stands! Cool!

Tomorrow is more Yankees and it's a 1:05 game, to totally mess up your day. But it's Corey Kluber so everything will be GRRRRRREAT! If anyone is going to stop this losing skid for us, it's the Klubot. Now if we could only have all of tonight's bats, none of tonight's errors and 100% Kluber you know we've got it on lockdown.

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"If I'm Carlos Santana I'm swinging on this pitch if it's anywhere near home plate."
- Tom Hamilton on Santana's at-bat in the first

"Bellino says 'You bat, I'll ump.'"
- Tom Hamilton

"There are small countries whose governments have been overthrown in the time it has taken to play this first inning."
- Tom Hamilton

"Well folks I hope you packed a sandwich. We're going to be here a while."
- Tom Hamilton

"Since Derek Jeter's mom is the scorer tonight, he was credited with a hit instead of an error."
- Tom Hamilton

"Josh Tomlin is Charlie Nagy Junior."
- Tom Hamilton

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Yan Gomes Hit A Home Run

And that's about all that happened in this game...

Well, ok - Gomes also got a double, and extended his hitting streak to 12. He's creeping towards .300, with a batting average of .286. His slugging for August so far is .727. Also:

Jason Kipnis went 3 for 4, which is weird because for most of the game we only had 3 hits total. But the team ended up with 7 hits, of which Kipnis had 3.

The team only scored 3 runs - and 2 of them belonged to Ryan Raburn! Who was in to pinch hit! For Brantley - nooooooooooooooooooo! He was limping a bit, I hear told. Say a little prayer.

Oh, David Murphy was up in the 2-spot, which is still up for grabs. Not a bad place for him, I say. And while he's warm, he'd be wasted down at the end of the lineup when the pitcher's gotta bat. Tonight he got a single. Didn't pay off or anything but he has a 4-game hitting streak and 12 hits in his last 10 games!

Whatever witchery they tried to pull on him last night didn't get Murphy down for long. AMEN!

Danny Salazar gave up two multi-run homers and that sucked and now he's in AAA. And Josh Tomlin is in the 'pen because he's still recuperating from Tommy John surgery. And Carlos Carrasco is probably going to be your next starter.

And the Tribe announced they are going to make a bunch of improvements to Progressive Field! I am down with it! I heard they're going to get rid of the right field upper deck and open up more of the skyline. And I heard Coors Field did something like that and turned the right field area into a party deck, which seems to be a popular way to watch the game nowadays. So that's cool! Anything to bring more fans out!

Tomorrow is the final game against the Reds. Maybe they won't have such a crazy good pitcher for once? Remember, we beat them 7-2 in the first game! It'll be our tiger TJ House versus RHP 3.89. Anything can happen!

No Radio Chatter. But Indians Twitter dude @CleRallyChicken and his wife had a baby during the game and they gave her this tiny foam finger and now I'm smitten.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

"Even The Sky Is Crying"

Cripes! Well you know a game is a real downer if it managed to bum out John Adams!

The box score is sad. The 5 hits we got were sad. The 9 runs we gave up are sad. Our 2 little runs are sad. David Murphy getting tricked in to being out at third was sad. Ending the game on a review was sad. Dammit...John Adams is sad!

But hey - we know how to lose, right? We've lost uhm....half of the games this year. It's just extra sad to win 4 in a row then lose one in a pathetic fashion right before the team goes away for a week. And it's raining.

Josh Tomlin did not have a very last-time-we-saw-Josh-Tomlin night. He only made it 4 innings before we'd seen enough. Five runs scored off 8 hits. He did strike out 5! But it took him 82 pitches to get that far, too. But you got to learn to live with what you got.

So since the Tribe wasn't hitting, it seemed, and the Reds had us by 5 runs by the time Tomlin was out, they just left Carrasco in there as "the second pitcher." It didn't feel like relief really since he was going to be the only one and in there for so long. Just the guy who is going to get us through to the end of this game. 

But hey, I do like that Carrasco can just go in there and be used for 4 innings and nobody cares that he gave up 3 runs because - hey, innings.

Carrasco was sleepy tired by the middle of the 9th, so The Boy Pitcher Kyle Crockett came out to get the last two batters. Cookie had left some men on base, because 4+ innings is a lot. Someone hit a ball off Crockett that confused poor David Murphy and I think some 17 men scored. But then one was out at the plate. Something like that. It was over by then, man.

Michael Brantley (.323) got a hit! It keeps his hitting streak alive at 6 but ends his streak of consecutive multi-hit games. SO WHAT! Totally LOB, though. All by his lonesome. He did get an RBI.

Gomes and Aviles both had doubles, and Gomes' was an RBI double. It was on that play that this shit happened.

 So very Cleveland of us.

David Murphy had a bad game but he did get a hit. Well that's how he got to third, and was tricked. Dirty tricksters.

I wonder if we'll see this any more in other games? Now that we know that the play can't be stopped until it's over or something. Everything I've seen says the umpires were right, it's the rules that are dumb. So yeah...expect the Yankees to be writing that one down.

Let's hope that the next two games, the Tribe is filled with revenge anger! I mean, nobody makes David Murphy look like a boob! He's such a good guy! We will run away with 2!!

It'll be 7:10 tomorrow, with  Danny Salazar facing anyone but Johnny Cueto (bonus - RHP!) Excited to see Salazar again now that we are pretty sure he's a good MLB pitcher. And - REVENGE!!!

I didn't get any Radio Chatter today but I did get some Sunday, forgetting that I don't do blogs on Sunday anymore. So - enjoy!

Radio Chatter:
"The ball is really small today, Rosie."
"There's only one of them out there at a time."
- Tom Hamilton and Jim Rosenhaus on the aftermath of "Hammy Weekend"

"These crazy mascots get together, the gloves come off!"
- Tom Hamilton on the mascot party

"Of course, 101 pitches in Japan would be like, eh, two-thirds of the way home."
- Tom Hamilton

"I'm sure the Yankees would say 'Look, we spoke with God and God said this must change.'"
- Tom Hamilton on when things don't go the Yankees' way

"How did we get here? Most of us by car."
- Tom Hamilton is about to give the recap in the 10th

"That one got him in the right biscuit. The trainer waved him off from the dugout. 'I'm not coming out there for that.'"
- Tom Hamilton

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Hold Steady

Anthony Castrovince wrote a good article about feelings behind the Thome statue. He pretty much nails how I feel about the issue, so I'll just let you read it. Since I'm the Positive Tribe I'm not going to rain on today's parade with my feelings. And it doesn't matter anyway.

I will say that it's always nice to see a big crowd at the stadium, and always nice to see Indians fans cheer on Indians - old and new. So if nothing else, it was very nice to see all of the excitement for Thome today.

And then a win! They did a big win last night for Hammy day, a respectable win tonight for Thome day. Wonder what will happen tomorrow on Slider's birthday??

TJ House was our man today. Man - can you believe how young our rotation is? Or maybe not young, but green? It's almost amazing we've got this many wins, considering how much these kids don't get picked up by the offense. Hats off to the rotation!

Anyway, House did have his struggles today. He only lasted 5 innings because it took him that long to throw 97 pitches. But he struck out SEVEN in that time! Lookout!! No runs allowed by House, with just 3 hits and 2 walks. When he wasn't striking them out, he was getting ground outs.

Up next was Old Mat Atchison. According to Jim Rosenhaus he is a-ok with the ribbing he gets about his age. Some of the players have been Tweeting "Atchison is so old..." stuff lately and I guess he gets it in the dugout. Tonight everyone was like "WOW look at him go!" when he chased down Elvis Andrus during a rundown between third and home. After the game Francona quipped that Atchison might not be able to walk in the morning. Zing! Well, Atch got the win, you whippersnappers. He also stuck around for 1 2/3 innings.

Shaw had a 1-2-3 groundout inning in the 8th, and then Cody Allen came in to "close." But not officially still? I dunno, he's our closer. I think after making a big deal out of Perez and Axford, everyone is afraid to mentally knock a guy down by calling him a closer! Anyway, it was a little shaky going at the end there with a walk and a single. But In Cody We Trust. The game remained a shutout!

Good thing, too. Because the Tribe had a heck of a time figuring out this Mikolas fella who came in to the game with an 8+ ERA. He lasted 7 innings and struck out 6 Indians, only giving up 5 hits. But thankfully they put a couple of those hits together and scored 2 runs. With the good work of House and the 'pen, that was all they needed!

Kipnis is still making a go of it, now with hits in 3 games in a row. He even came around to score!

Michael Brantley (.322) is sloooowly creeping back up to my magic .330! He's hit in 3 games now, as well. Even though Kipnis has a respectable 4 hits in those 3 games, Brantley has SEVEN. Because, Brantley. Shameful he didn't get an RBI or score, or get any extra bases. But he'll keep grinding out those hits.

Santana went 0 for 2. Hey, turn that frown upside-down! Cuz you know what that means? Two walks, yo! On base, like a boss!

Chiz and Swisher both got 2-out RBI singles in the 6th, which is all there was of scoring today. Good to know that the team still has that 2-out run scoring ability. Nice to see it BEFORE the 7th inning, too.

Also, Chiz back on the hit-horse. Do you think we'll ever have a statue of him? I just advised my brother to pick up Lonnie for his fantasy team because I have an inkling that he'll be on an upswing the rest of the year. I hope I'm right!

Tomorrow is a 1:05 game, and it's Slider's birthday! I hope he has a bunch of mascot friends there. I always find that amusing. I like the Phanatic and Mr. Met. I noted last year that the Padres sent over some actual Catholic-looking guy and not the Chicken. What's up with that??

It'll be Bauer tomorrow versus RHP 2.90. Hmm, scary. But today we only scored 2 against a guy with an 8+ ERA so maybe tomorrow we'll bust it open against this guy? Stranger things have happened.

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"It's like somebody there ticked off God."
"Or someone is there with a doll wearing a Texas jersey, sticking pins in it."
- Mike Hargrove and Jim Rosenhaus on Texas' fall from the top

"I'm glad they didn't ask me to talk, cuz I have a lot of stories."
- Mike Hargrove on the Tom Hamilton anniversary presentation

"If I really said how I feel, we'd both be fined by the FCC and we'd be doing something else."
- Mike Hargrove on Thome hayters

"I feel bad about this but my first thought was 'He'd better be dead.'"
- Mike Hargrove on Slider falling off the wall and interrupting play in the 1995 ALCS

"That's worth the ticket right there."
- Mike Hargrove on the interesting Thome-statue-related play by Mustard during the Hot Dog Derby

Friday, August 1, 2014

Happy Hammy Day!

It's Tom Hamilton's 25th anniversary as the voice of the Indians! Don't forget to treat yourself to a swell new tee for the occasion. I'm so old I remember when Hammy was "the new guy" but still he's been one of the voices of my Tribe since I was 10. I just loved him and Herb Score together. Herb was so...Herb and Tom was so radio. I love how Hammy's calls have become iconic. It always makes me laugh when Hammy is away and people complain about how bad Jim Rosenhaus is but in reality, Jim Rosenhaus is just fine. He sounds like everyone else in the league. His only "problem" is that everyone in Cleveland is used to Tom Hamilton!

I hope he's got 25 more years in him. If Cleveland can't have championships, at least we can have guys like Hammy who make every game seem like it's the most exciting game in the world!

Oh yeah so today on Hammy Day - Everybody Hits! I don't know how accurate my scale is over there on the right but if it is accurate then this is only the SECOND TIME this year that there's been a hit in every spot, 1-9! No foolin! And, get this - everybody SCORED too! Fun!

It was almost inconsequential that Danny Salazar had a great game, being that he could have given up 11 runs and we still would have been ok. But he didn't - he gave up just 1 run in his 6 full innings! Four strikeouts, 3 walks and just 4 hits.

Since it was 12-2 by the time Salazar was done, they tried out some new arms. The Boy Pitcher Kyle Crockett came in for 2/3 of an inning. He gave up 2 hits before Terry got bored with him and brought in the other new guy, Austin Adams. Adams finished up the 7th and pitched the 8th as well, giving up just one hit and striking out 1.

Carlos Carrasco finished it up and it wasn't his best showing. Once again, he had an 11-run lead but after ALL THAT it was kind of a bummer to see him give up a run on 2 hits to make it just a 10-run lead. Everyone was ready for the game to be OVER and for the party to begin!

David Murphy took the prize tonight for Pure Hitness! He went 4 for 4 against his former team/hometown team! He got 2 RBI and came in to score 2 runs, and 2 of hit hits were doubles. No LOB for him! I also hear tell that he went after a ball and ripped his pants - even though we were up 12-1. What a good guy! Six hits in the last 2 game for Murphy...locked in?

Next on tonight's awesome scale is, of course, Michael Brantley (.320). He went 3 for 4 with 2 RBI and a run scored. Five hits for him in his last 2 games. What did I say about last night being the beginning of a new hit streak? WHAT DID I SAY?!

Next is Lonnie Chisenhall (.309) who just HAD to do something big in this game. He had to! It was his 10th homer in the 6th inning that pushed him over the edge! He went 2 for 5 on the night with "just" the one RBI. Lonnie got 11 homers last year in his 94 at-bats. He's got 10 now, and I believe 96 at-bats. That's kind of interesting considering how we are viewing this year as "his" year but it just goes to show that we're being wowed by his consistency (er, by what used to be his consistency) and not just by his power. Now, if only this were the start of a great month for him, too...

Mike Aviles also got 2 hits, and went 2 for 4. Actually, I might have put him ahead of Lonnie Baseball because he got THREE RBI. All 3 of them on singles! That's our Aviles, in there making things happen. After the game he was interviewed by Hammy and was asked "Do you like to play short stop?" or something and Aviles said "I like to play. Just stop at that much." Love that guy!!

Carlos SAAAAAANTANA! He only went 1 for 3 tonight, meaning of course he walked twice. Interesting fact: His batting average and slugging were higher in July than in June (and both months absolutely trounced April and May)...but his on-base percentage in June was slightly higher than July. He wasn't hitting as much yet in June but he got his "eyes" back and started walking more than he had in the spring. There you have it! He got an RBI and scored a run tonight, giving him 13 RBI in his last 10 games.

Kipnis, Swisher, Gomes and Raburn each got hits tonight as well. And, as mentioned before, they all came in to score at least once.

Jose Ramirez, Tyler Holt and Roberto Perez all came in to the game in position player relief once the win was secured. None of them got a hit. But that was 5 young boys on the team for the Tribe tonight. Wow it feels...interesting.

In other news, Asdrubal had a nice play tonight at second for the Nationals. And this happened:

Some sort of Circle of Life, there.

Tomorrow is the Jim Thome Statue game. Meh. It'll be another young man, TJ House, up there against RHP 8.54. What? Wow, bring extra money for snacks it's going to be another long one! Do you think they can "Everybody Hits" two nights in a row after taking 3 months off? We'll see!

See you there!

I don't have any Radio Chatter tonight, but here's a celebration of Hammy's career that was compiled last year (and it's part 2!) Check out other videos by the guy who put this one up - he's Hammy's biggest fan!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

He's Gone

Well, Asdrubal's gone. He got traded to the Nationals for an infielder named Zach Walters.

I was upset with the loss of Masterson, as a Tribe fan. As the self-proclaimed #1 fan of Asdrubal, I'm pretty crushed.

But, my Tribe-fan-ness overcomes my Asdrubal-fan-ness and realizes that while he was full of the razzle-dazzle early on, he was streaky. And this year he was downright frustrating. In fact, he was bad. Even when he wasn't hitting, I still loved him as a SS. But 14 errors this year at SS and a lot of bad hitting?

Let me put it this way...I am most saddened by the circumstances that led to this being the reality. I wish Asdrubal well - I hope he finds his spark again and amazes a new set of fans.
Officially retired.
So after Asdrubal was traded away, there was a baseball game.

Zach McAllister was the starter. He's still not really that great. Pretty lucky that Kluber went the whole way last night because ZMac only managed 3 1/3 innings today and to try to win this series, Tito threw 6 more guys out there after him.

McAllister gave up 4 runs in his 3 1/3 innings and struck out none. Geez! Everyone but Carrasco and Allen showed up after that, and everyone did well with strikeouts here and there a couple hits. Until we were tied, and Bryan Shaw gave up a walk then a homer. What?? Does Bryan Shaw do that??

I guess he does now.

The offense made up one run, and got a hit in the 9th that looked promising...but it didn't happen.

It was nice to see the team batting and scoring behind their struggling starter, though! You don't HAVE to have 5 perfect starters if your offense can overcome any crap with runs. They almost did today but it just wasn't enough.

Kipnis had a rare great night tonight! He went 2 for 5 with a double and a 2-run homer! Cool! Kid has not been "on it" at all lately. Maybe this is a turn-around?

Jose Ramirez is taking over at short and in the 2nd spot in the order. He's definitely fast, that's for sure. Although he could steal on occasion, Asdrubal was never known for his speed. In the 7th inning, he got a single then scampered to 2nd on a passed ball. Then his speed let him score from second on a single by Santana. It'll be interesting to see what kind of difference his speed makes!

After being silenced this series so far, Michael Brantley (.316) had a nice night, going 2 for 3 with 2 hits and 2 walks. I'd say "of course he got a double" but in fact he got a triple! And an RBI, of course. Start of a new streak, we hope?

And, holy hot Carlos Santana! Before tonight he'd only gotten 1 hit in the series, then tonight he got 2 hits and 2 RBI! And what's kinda cool is that he didn't get any extra bases, and one of his RBI was a sac fly. Shows he's well-rounded, right?

Ugh, Lonnie Chisenhall. We are all waiting for your return, son. We're here.

After a pretty crummy June where he hit only .185, David Murphy is back "for sure" finishing off July with .280 worth of hitting under his belt. Tonight he went 2 for 4, but unfortunately had no one to hit in and no one to hit him in. Bummer!

Gomes cooled off a smidge and only went 1 for 4 himself. Dickerson left the game at some point, after a crazy throw. I don't remember the official line on his injury but dang - it is getting lethal out there in the Tribe outfield!

Good thing we have Aviles, who can and will play anywhere. He went 0 for 3 with a walk and a run scored. Because he's always in on things!

Crummy kind of game today. I was glad to see at least a couple Twerps sad to see Cabby go and hoping the team would win one for him. Didn't happen, though. It was a good start, but they just couldn't pull it out this time.

Tomorrow is Tom Hamilton's 25th anniversary celebration! Not sure if I'll be able to catch any of that. Well maybe they'll throw it up on line at some point.

The Tribe will be hosting the Rangers at 7:05. It'll be Salazar versus a RHP so new that his ERA is 1.50. The Mighty Rangers are awful this year, by the way. They are just under .400. They are worse than the Astros, who are just over .400.

So, maybe we can have a fun blowout win on Tom Hamilton day. See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"If he's in long relief for the post season, Kate Upton will dump him like yesterday's garbage."
- Tom Hamilton on Kate Upton

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

New Day For Tribe Pitching

If there's one thing Clevelanders love, it's people who love Cleveland. Especially our sports stars. Bernie Kosar, Josh Cribbs, Joe Haden, Victor Martinez, Terry Francona, Jason Kipnis, Carlos Baerga, Omar Vizquel. There's no reason as a sports fan to love Nick Swisher, but as a Clevelander he sure knows how to push all one's buttons so he gets his own section.

By all accounts, Justin Masterson loves Cleveland.  As we all sat crying along with Victor as he was shipped off to Not Our Team, the Indians were lucky to get in return a new city champion in the baseball park. A new guy that, as it turned out, wanted to be here and wanted to do well. A guy to carry us and impress us and for us to show off on Opening Day. A big man with an even bigger heart who, along with his wife Meryl, wanted to make a difference off the field too. And he was a hell of a pitcher.

The loss of Masty is a big one, but we all know it makes sense baseball-wise. It's not like the loss of Bartolo or Lee or Victor. The person leaving makes it harder than the loss of Ubaldo or Choo. But right now, if you take out the personal part of it, it's no worse than losing Ubaldo.

One hopes he doesn't turn in to Ubaldo. It would be amazing for him it ended up being like the loss of Scott Kazmir and he went on to have a great career, going out on top. What better team to go to than the Cardinals? A good solid team, maybe where he's not the leader and just one of five. I'm also glad he went to the NL and hope he stays there so he can't go all Victor on us.

I hope it goes well for him. He went well for us.
So long and thanks for all the fish!
In an interesting turn of events, within hours of losing our former ace, Corey Kluber secured his spot on our roster as "new ace." He killed it last week in his 2-hit, 9-inning game. Today the ante was upped, to see if he could finish the game and pull one out against The Ace, Felix Hernandez.

He did it. He totally did it.
First of all, the game lasted 2:10 because not only was Klubes mowing them down, but so was Felix. His line looked pretty humdrum next to Kluber's, though. with his 7 innings pitched and 2 earned runs. Here's what Kluber did:
I guess he only threw 16 balls, while Hernandez threw 37. He didn't walk anyone, ya see. And while they were the first to get on base, nothing came of it. He actually had some DEFENSE today, with two stellar double plays, which is how he managed to just see 28 batters.

The last time I saw a game like this? When Justin Masterson threw a complete game shutout in game one of a doubleheader in May of 2013. I was there for that one! It was boring as heck cuz the Tribe won with 1 run. would seem the torch has been passed.

Other than defense, the rest of the team did actually come through to put the Tribe over the edge and secure the W for Kluber that goes along with a game like this. Amazing they did it against King Felix but there you have it.

It was just Chiz, Gomes and Swisher who got hits. And of course, Santana walked. He walked to start the 5th, Lonnie doubled and Mike Sarbaugh pulled up some Old Baseball Wisdom and kept Santana at third instead of sending him. Swisher got on by the grace of God, or Robinson Cano, but due to the nature of the play, Santana was unable to score. Bases loaded, no one out.

Things got a little mucky for Murphy who was up next, and Santana ended up being out at home. But Yan Gomes is still quietly making a huge impact in this lineup, now with a hitting streak of 6 games. Today he got that crucial Brantley-like double with the bases loaded and 2 men scored. That's 9 RBI for Yan in his last 10 games, and 14 hits in that time.

That was the only scoring in the game, by the way! Just those two paragraphs!

The team was wearing their socks pulled up over their calves, in tribute to Masterson. Very classy. It was a bittersweet victory today, I'm glad they won it for Masterson. In a very Kluber way.

Next is....sigh, there's more baseball after the trade deadline? Ok, well tomorrow we all move along and hope that McAllister is inspired to throw a good one against RHP 3.04. Pull up those socks and let's get another win, boys!

No Radio Chatter today. I was all over the place during the game.

But they did say that Terry Francona said he'd pay to watch this game. Tom Hamilton said he'd probably get 6 hot dogs too. Well!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

To The Left, To The Left

How fun was this game, boffins?? KC took the early lead but they didn't get too far ahead, as the Tribe was just down 1 run to start the 6th. Salazar was keeping things tight and soon after the Tribe exploded for 4 runs against Chen! The lefty, Bruce Chen!

Not only that, they turned it around and KEPT SCORING RUNS! Yessss!

We'll start off with Salazar, who is pretty much solidifying himself as a legit starter for us to go along with Kluber and Bauer. We know he had it in him right? Today he threw 112 pitches - 11 more than his previous high number - and went 7 solid innings only giving up 3 runs. Quality start! And since the rest of his team was HITTING today it was an easy win for the kid.

Shaw and the Boy Pitcher Crockett came out for the 8th and 9th and it was nothing, because as I mentioned, the Tribe KEPT HITTING.

It was a bit of a B-team today, with Kipnis out on rest. Dickerson (who is, when you think about it, our full-time guy) and Murphy cooling their jets too. Gomes in at DH and Swisher in right. Chisenhall was out with "intestinal troubles." And Asdrubal back from a 6-game sit-down after some back problems. But, since our team is actually a very deep and very talented bunch, who happen to continue to not play to their potential, it was no problem for these 9 to come together and take a win!

Since Jose Ramirez was free (Asdrubal), he was put in at 2nd base and also the leadoff hitter. Kipnis copy! He went 1 for 5 and came in to score a run.

Asdrubal, who was showing some promise before he got hurt, came right back today batting second, and went 2-5 with 2 runs scored an an RBI!

What'd I say about Brantley (.318) last night? That he was about to start a new streak after breaking a hittless streak last night? Well, I was right! Today he went 2 for 4 with 2 RBI and 2 runs scored. And now that Carlos is hitting behind him, you gotta throw to him!

Thank you. thank you thank you.
Today Carlos went 3 for 3. He got 2 home runs and 4 RBI. He walked. He came in to score twice. In this 4-game stint against KC alone he has gotten 5 homers, 8 RBI and 5 walks. In 6 games, his average has risen .020. Woah.

Stay hot, 'Los!! You are our KEY!!!

And how about Yan Gomes? I mentioned last night too that he is quietly heating up. Today they put him in at the 5th spot, and HE got 3 hits as well! "Only" one homer, but he really tore it up in this series too. Seven hits and 3 RBI for the catcher. Awesome!

Poor ol' Ryan Raburn. He's really going down the tubes. But he homered today! A little glimpse of what we loved so much last year. Just his third homer this year but by-golly, off of a lefty.

Dickerson came in to hit for Raburn later and he got a hit! Because, Chris Dickerson.

Roberto Perez is still hangin' tough as the backup catcher. He poked out a hit today and came in to score a run. He's hitting .278!

Mike Aviles went 0 for 1 today. You heard me! He was in there getting stuff done, instead! He walked, he got hit by a pitch (on the hand. Ugh!) He stole a base, he had a sac bunt. All of the things one can do when not hitting!

Tom Hamilton mentioned that a lot of teams would like to nab Aviles during this trade time but it's very highly unlikely he could be bought. Unless you get a #1 starter. And Tampa Bay isn't dealing Price now so Aviles is here to stay. Our Puerto Rican bargining chip!

Tomorrow is an OFF DAY. Good for us, right? Ten days and 11 games. On Tuesday the guys will be back home, where they win a lot of games. It'll be versus Seattle, who we're chasing for the second Wild Card spot. Good series!

So Tuesday at 7:05, Trevor Bauer will face off against a RHP 3.05. Not a high ERA but Brantley, Gomes and Santana all hit this guy well. It could be the beginning of something great!

I don't have any Radio Chatter today. I was pulling weeds outside while listening to the game. It was awful. Weedding - not the game!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

New Ways to Lose

Well, you gotta give it to 'em - they found a new way to lose today. So we can't go saying it's just the offense or just the defense or just the starters or relievers. They have ALL been bad over these past 4 games!

Today it was the starter, Zach McAllister. He had a 5-run lead and - get this - he lost it. Lost it ALL! He had 4 earned runs in 4 innings. The fifth run came thanks to leaving a runner on base in the 5th for reliever Hagadone, who gave up a homer to this Billy Butler character who has had 2 of his season' s 5 homers in the last 2 games.


Atchison, Zep and Allen came in to finish and they did their part by not giving up any runs.

You know, come to think of it, the offense was bad again today. They exploded for 5 runs early on, and ended up with 12 hits on the night. But they only got 4 hits after that 5-run second inning!

Carlos Santana had ANOTHER homer! He had 6 in April/May but has 11 in June/July so far. And once again, it wasn't just that. He went 2 for 4 with a walk and his 16th double. He in no way leads the team in doubles but he leads the MAJORS in walks! Cool! He's got a 6-game hitting streak too, with 12 hits and 6 RBI in that time. And 3 homers, as you noticed.

Michael Brantley (.316) finally got two hits in a game today, for the first time in a week. He got his team-leading 26th double for an RBI, as well as a single. Let's hope he gets better from here!

Kipnis had a good night too, by the way. He had a two-RBI double in that 2nd inning, and came around to score. Kid's been streaky - this was his first hit in the series.

Gomes and Murphy again, you guys! Gomes got another 2 hits, giving him 13 in his last 10 games. Murphy's got himself a 5-game streak going on, with 7 hits in those games as well as a walk tonight. Both guys did come around to score - in that second inning.

Mike Aviles was added to the lineup about 15 minutes before the game today, because Lonnie Baseball has the blahs or something. Handsome Mike seems to do well under pressure because he went 2 for 4 tonight and looked good in the field! It was Aviles who got the 2-out scoring going in that second inning, after Santana had started it off with a homer. Aviles hit an RBI single, and then came around to score with David Murphy on Kipnis' double in the next at-bat.

Super fun times there in the second inning, and Tom Hamilton even had the game won by the third. But McAllister just dropped the ball (PUN INTENDED) and the bats never came back even though the Royals had the same guy throwing for 4 more innings. That was it. That wasn't so fun.

Welp, one more against these Royals tomorrow and then the road trip is OVER! It'll be Danny Salazar versus...oh no. Well it's a LHP but he's got a 5.80 ERA and also Brantley is hitting over .500 lifetime against him so that's good!

Stranger things have happened! See you there!

No Radio Chatter today. I kept missing the good


I know, I know. Not positive. But it's a Weird Al kind of week, right? Gotta get my parody out there.

So I don't know who the culprit was today. Starters? Defense? Offense? Relievers? Everyone contributed to the loss. The starter gave up 3 runs. The defense 1. The relievers 2. And the offense only scored 4 - or, the offense without Carlos Santana scored 1.

So at least they were working together on that nonsense.

Here's Josh Tomlin with an empty face:
Much less hair to distract him today. But while he struck out 5 in his 5 1/3 innings, he also gave up 3 runs including back-to-back solo homers. He's given up 16 runs in his last 4 games with an average of under 6 innings per game. These are the 4 games since his 1-hit complete game, by the way. So how do we interpret that??

The Boy Pitcher Crockett came in to finish the 6th for him. He did fine, with one strikeout and one walk. Carrasco came in for that "long" middle, throwing 1 1/3 innings. He gave up a run, though. So they brought in Hagadone who got his guy out. Then they brought out Axford, apparently having been falsely lulled into thinking he was ok to pitch in a tie game situation. He then gave up the winning run, in the form of a huge homer to a guy with 3 homers so far, because he sucks.

Kind of amazing that the game was so close today, seeing how our lineup failed to hit much!

For some reason Dickerson didn't get a hit today (but he was electric in the field), and they put in Raburn to hit instead. Bwuh? He didn't do anything either.

Brantley FINALLY got a hit (.316). He was 1 for his last 18! When does that ever happen, huh? He just went 1 for 4 today but maybe it's the beginning of a new streak?

Carlos Santana, waaaaaaaat!! Two homers for 3 RBI, and a walk. He went 3 for 2 and as I said, scored 3 of the team's 4 runs. He stole a base, too! STOLE A BASE! I don't know if you can really hate Carlos Santana, long-term. He keeps taking us to the edge of disgust and then coming out with the awesome.

Gomes has been pretty consistent lately, huh? Thirteen hits in his last 10 games. Usually they work out pretty well, too, either producing an RBI or a run. Like tonight, he came in to score. With his offensive production as of late and his general lack of errors, it's exciting to have Gomes again!

Oh man - David Murphy! Even though he's after Gomes, his three hits went for NOTHING today! No RBI, no runs. How did that happen? He's such a good guy, though. He'll just keep hitting, no matter who's around.

Jose Ramirez got a bunt down today! Which led to Gomes scoring on a Kipnis sac fly. Tom Hamilton was livid about his lack of ability to get a bunt down last night. So he was quite proud to have been listened to today. Ramirez also got a walk, so he went 0 for 2. They keep mentioning that Asdrubal might be back soon and...weird, I don't feel too excited about it. Just ambivalent. Bad fan.

Tomorrow is a 7:10 game, even though it's in KC. So, don't forget! It'll be our ZMac versus RHP 4.56. We have as much chance of winning Saturday as we did tonight. Let's hope it actually happens! Offense, fellas. We need some offense.

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"Minor league innings and Major League inning, they have nothing in common."
- Tom Hamilton

"If your doctor says your cholesterol is a little bit high and you should cut out red meat, Kansas City is not the destination for you."
- Tom Hamilton loves him some meat

"I don't read lips but I can only guess the conversation is something like 'If you don't get this bunt down, do you know where you might be practicing bunts tomorrow?'"
- Tom Hamilton on Jose Ramirez

"That ball sounded like it was shot out of a cannon."
- Tom Hamilton on Butler's homer

"They wanted to run Billy Butler out of town, until about 10 minutes ago."
- Tom Hamilton

Friday, July 25, 2014

The Long Con

Corey Kluber had one heck of a game tonight. Unfortunately he got screwed out of the win by his teammates. Because they couldn't hit, and they committed an error, and they lost the game.

Kluber pitched NINE innings. All nine of them. Nine innings with 10 strikeouts and no walks. Like the Doors had no bass, Corey Kluber had NO WALKS. He had a perfect game going in to the 7th, and only used 107 pitched through 9. Two hits, one run. For July he had 4 games, 23 innings, 1.47 ERA.  BOW TO KLUBER!
There were still 5 more innings to go after that, because however good Kluber was pitching, the team was behind him not hitting.

So there was Shaw, Atchison, Zep an Axford. They were reliably reliable, including Zep. And by that I mean he is starting to reliably be bad. What's up with that? Tonight he gave up the winning single by leaving a man on base for Axford to deal with and then lose later on when Aoki hit a single to left. Did you follow that? Blah blah - 5 innings later, the Royals won.

Not much to say today about our offense except for CARLOS SANTANA. On base, like a boss!
Somebody tweeted my "Like a Boss!" picture today and it got 8 favorites and 10 retweets and I was sad cuz no attribution for me. My own mistake - sometimes I make these pics so fast I forget to stamp 'em!

But anyway back to baseball.

Carlos Santana had 2 hits and 2 walks tonight, and came in to score the only run! How about that! See you just can never give up on this guy (Swisher, yes you can.)

Gomes is the man who stepped up and made it a tie ballgame in the NINTH after the Royals got their first run right before that in the 8th. Wahoo! Free baseball! Gomes actually ended up striking out 4 times and leaving 4 on base. Whomp whomp.

Brantley was completely shut down but since he's had so many at-bats, having an 0-6 game only puts him one point (.316) behind Chisenhall (.317) who managed to hit 2.

David Murphy and Jose Ramirez also got hits tonight, but nothing came of them.

I'm not going to talk about Ryan Raburn's play in left field, because I feel like the anger is over-the-top. I mean I guess if you were already ready to get rid of him before tonight, ok it's some nice "SEE??" fodder for you. But he's only got ONE error, and Gomes has 12. So....? Also, I don't see why everyone is so shocked that a guy can bounce a ball like that. Pitchers do it all the time and they only have to throw it 60 feet 6 inches.

Anyway, tomorrow Kansas City is putting up a RHP for us, so they can stop mocking our lineup. Let's hope everyone's not all stiff and sore from all that whiffing tonight.

It'll be 8:10. No cheap Papa John's for us. I'll see you there!

Radio Chatter:
"They're thinking they don't want to be the guy to mess this up."
- Tom Hamilton on defense during a perfect game

"This isn't a case of two offenses not performing. This is a case of two pitchers performing brilliantly."
- Tom Hamilton

"If they leave Duffy in and Gomes hits a home run, they'll barbecue Ned Yost. If they bring the right hander in and he doesn't get it done, they'll do the same thing."
- Tom Hamilton

"This Indians defense is numbing in how they can beat themselves time and again."
- Tom Hamilton

"When I said one swing of the bat would win this game, that wasn’t what we were envisioning."
- Tom Hamilton

"If Kluber loses this game 1-0, that's a felony."
- Tom Hamilton

"I wanted to come out here and comment on your blue eyes. They are vivid."
- Tom Hamilton imagining what Ned Yost is saying to the umpire

"I know it's easy to sit up here and say 'You gotta get a bunt down' but you know what? You gotta get a bunt down."
- Tom Hamilton

"That's how the game has changed. There was a time when if you couldn't get a bunt down you'd be practicing that bunt the next day in triple-A."
- Tom Hamilton

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Stumble and Fall

Just a quick blog post because I got stuff to do. I'm at work!

We were totally supposed to win this one today, but it didn't happen. That how baseball go.

Trevor Bauer was good, he had a quality start. Six innings, 3 earned runs. Seven strikeouts in those 6 innings - not bad!

Carrasco came out for the 7th, and Hagadone for the 8th. Nick making a nice transition back up to the bigs so far.

The bats were just dumb today. Except for Jose Ramirez, who was back again from Columbus. He went 2 for 3 with a double - the team's only multi-hit player, only multi-base hit and only RBI. The rest of the runs were on errors. 

Santana got another hit, so that's cool. A bona fide comeback?

Roberto Perez wasn't so hot AT the plate but he crushed it from behind the plate! Two caught stealing boyeeeeeee.

Kipnis and Murphy also got hits today. Murphy came around to score.

And that's it! Kind of hurts to dedicate an afternoon to a game and have it go so BLAH but sometimes it happens. Time for everyone to take their naps, catch up on some Orange is the New Black, and get ready for the 8:10 start against KC tomorrow.

It'll be Corey Kluber, thank God, versus LHP 2.66. me at the flagpole for a prayer circle beforehand. See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"It's amazing how you can end up on a float."
- Tom Hamilton on his possible participation in the St. Patrick's day festivities

"'Day Baseball - It Works' That ought to be baseball's new motto."
- Tom Hamilton

"He raises his hands in the air as he crosses home plate, in one of the slowest home run trots you'll see for a guy who now has 6 home runs."
- Tom Hamilton on Arcia's homer

"The only thing people in Dallas knew was that you put it in your drink. They didn't know people were running on top of it."
- Tom Hamilton on hockey moving from Minnesota to Dallas

The Way It Ought To Be

Finally! Back to the Tribe roundly beating the worst team in the division, after kicking butt against the best team over the weekend. I guess yesterday's game was a fluke.

Right handed pitcher, man. That's all we need.

Pitching for the good guys was Danny Salazar, back up from Columbus because I think Tito gets some kind of frequent-bussing points. Like the other kids this past week, he did ok but of course had a heart-stopping inning where he struck out one, walked the bases loaded, then struck out the next two. STOP THAT! He did get the win after pitching 5 innings and giving up 3 runs. He struck out 6 and only ended up walking those 3 in that one inning!

Then it was the boy pitcher Crockett who had a nice clean inning, juxtaposed the next inning with the old man Atchison (15 years his senior) who made a point to pitch 1 2/3 innings I think. Trying to show up the kid didn't work too well for him - he did give up a run on 2 hits. A homer to Dozier, who at least has 19 homers so it wasn't such a surprise.

He was followed by Zep who apparently can't pitch to right handers? What the heck is all this nonsense?? His ERA is 1.29 versus left, 6.93 right. The fuck??

Allen had to come in early, to finish the 8th since Zep couldn't, but it was ok because he wasn't needed for a save in the 9th, as it was 8-2 by then. Carrasco took care of it.

The Tribe was 5-12 with RISP! And also looked good in the field. And touched a couple different pitchers. All sorts of winning!

Kipnis wasn't on his hitting game today, after being named last week's Player of the Week. But in the 9th he did get put on intentionally (no doubt they heard about the POTW thing) and then stole a base and then came around to score on a single, sliding around the tag and all that jazz. BEHOLD! So yeah, that kid's a TEAM PLAYER.

Speaking of team - Brantley and Chisenhall were also hitless tonight. Our three best guys, shut out! (Well Brantley got a walk too) But the rest of the TEAM stepped up and got RUNS - so that's pretty awesome!

And, Chris Dickerson?
Keep doing whatever you've been doing, because it's just so right! Another hit, another TWO RBI, even though he countered it with 3 strikeouts. Just keep getting those hits when it matters, yo.

And Carlos Santana! Caaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaarlos Santanaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! He went 4 for 5 tonight including a homer, a double and two singles. No-go on the triple, of course. It was the anniversary of the last Tribe cycle, though. And it happened in Minnesota! How weird is that? I guess his homer went pretty far, too. A no-doubt-about-it job. Later on, his double in the 9th brought in the 8th run.

Yan Gomes is still hot. He's got 12 hits and 6 RBI in his last 8 games! Tonight he went 2 for 4 tonight, and knocked in Nick Swisher for a RBI.

Everybody's favorite clutch hitter, David Murphy (actually I think he leads the league), was up with the bases loaded, and guess what happened. Guess! Guess! Two-run single!

Mike Aviles didn't get any hits, batting ninth, but he did follow up Murphy's single with a sac fly and an RBI. And he looked good at short.

Lots of nice stuff from the top and bottom of the order tho, huh?

Tomorrow's game is the big boy Bauer versus another RHP with an ERA over 4. Easy peasy, right?? I'm looking forward to it. As long as I can remember to tune in at 1:10 PM. Man, I can hardly remember to eat lunch these days.

But I think it's going to be a fun, high-scoring game with lots of hits for the good guys. So I'll see you there!

Radio Chatter:
"When it comes to an up-and-down season, Santana's would resemble one of those roller coasters at Cedar Point."
- Tom Hamilton

"Oh it looked like he blew a tire going into second!"
- Tom Hamilton on a slide by Kendrys Morales

"Give it up, the Twins are not going to rally, LAY OFF THE ORGAN!"
- Tom Hamilton

"Is that the job description? 'Eternal optimist'"
- Jim Rosenhaus on the upbeat Twins' organist

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Left Hand of DOOM!

Nooo! Not only did the Indians lose to the worst team around but it was also our rock-solid reliever Bryan Shaw who gave up the winning run. Tragic!

TJ House was today's starter and he didn't seem nearly as tight as he did in some of his other appearances. Maybe he's a little off-kilter from going to and from Columbus a few times? House only managed 5 innings and gave up 3 runs. Six hits and 3 walks. He left after 89 pitches. He didn't look awful but he just didn't seem as mature as before.

CC Lee, who's been back recently, only got one out in the 6th while giving up 2 hits. Nick Hagadone magically appeared and swiftly got the next 2 outs! Then we were contractually obliged to let John Axford pitch, but he actually had a 1-2-3 inning so that was surprising cool.

Bryan Shaw pitched the 8th and you already know what happened. The game was tied. He got just his second loss of the year.

But still....the pitchers should be able to get by on giving up 4 runs, right? No - left. HA! The Tribe just can't hit lefties!

They fielded a motley crew today after that long weekend series, with Mike Aviles in center while Brantley rested. Gomes was the DH so Roberto Perez was in as catcher. Murphy had the day off too with Swisher in right, and Santana at first. Then Asdrubal was having back problems so they took him out and put in Dickerson. He went to center and the Aviles experiment was over. He did manage to make one great play while he was out there!

The Tribe had 8 hits today. One hit for everyone except doo doo doo doo....Swisher, that's right. But one hit per guy doesn't do it. Neither does 8 strikeouts.

Chris Dickerson came in for Asdrubal in the 3rd, came right out and hit an RBI single! He's got 11 hits and 4 RBI now with just 10 games as an Indian. What a gem! He also fit right in by striking out with RISP. Sigh.

Gomes was randomly batting third, and he had a big RBI double in the 5th after Dickerson walked. He's been quietly heating up lately! Ten hits in his last 7 games. And 5 RBI, too.

Michael Brantley (.328) is amazing and  came in to pinch hit in the 8th and got a double. Then Roberto Perez, who doesn't yet qualify as "amazing" but in fact is "promising," came up to bat and got an RBI single. Nice, kid!

Michael Brantley, as it turns out, does not seem to have much of a sense of humor. Paul Hoynes reported today that Aviles put up an "inspirational poster" of himself in Brantley's locker. And Chisenhall challenged Brantley to a bet as to who would end the season with the better average, and Brantley was all "I don't look at numbers." Yeesh, ok. Then again, carrying the entire weight of a team on one's shoulders does make one a little smarmy. Especially when the rest of the team is clearly underperforming.

Lonnie Baseball did get a hit, by the way. But now he's .003 behind Brantley.

So while it actually was the perfect time to throw some of our other players out there in the starting lineup, and give random pitchers some work, it all came down to no one being able to hit the lefty. It was the 45th game in which the Tribe has scored 3 runs or fewer - and this was the 99th game!

Looks like we've really got a good chance to win this series, though - they've run out of lefties! The next two games will be against RHP with ERA over 4. We like those kinds of pitchers, no doubt.

Tomorrow is another 8:10 start, so you've got an extra hour to mow the lawn.

Sorry no Radio Chatter tonight - I swear, Tom Hamilton was so not in to this game. He was expecting a blowout after that great Detroit series and instead got a dud. He actually gave the game to the Twins by the end of the 7th.

We'll try it again tomorrow. See you there!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

The Chris Dickerson Show With Special Guest Carlos Santana

Chris Dickerson is the real deal. It's like he's so appreciative of being picked up by a new team that he can't help but be awesome. Yes he failed to hit on Friday but he more than made up for it by getting the only two runs of the first 8 innings of the second game by way of the home run. Two home runs!

That was the second game, of course on my mind at the moment. But let's roll it back to the first game...
The first game was like smooth sailing, being that Kluber had the ball for the good guys and some kid throwing his first MLB game had the ball for the other guys. Yeah, there was a few innings wasted while they figured the kid out but during that time Kluber was just like "PITCH. PITCH. PITCH." And then when the Tribe finally managed to score in the 5th he just kept going.
And before you knew it, it was the 9th inning and he had thrown 114 pitches, struck out 10, walked just 1 and given up just 2 runs. There were 2 outs, and in deference to the run he just gave up and then the man on second from a double, Klubot was turned off for the night. Bryan Shaw came in to get that last guy. That was the ballgame.

Ok, maybe there was more to the ballgame, like chasing that new kid off the mound after 5 innings and 3 earned runs. Then hitting their bullpen for 3 more. And not even seeing Albequerque!

While the homer carried Friday's game and Saturday night's game, the afternoon game was about 10 singles and 5 walks. The 5th inning saw 5 hits and 3 runs!

Kipnis kept it up, going 2 for 5 with 2 more RBI. And even Asdrubal did things, going 1 for 5 and thus giving him 12 hits in his last 10 games. Yes, 9 strikeouts, yes yes. But he has 2 RBI in 2 games!

Brantley (.327) got the game's first hit and that was all for him. Just 1 for 5 in this game. Santana - who I didn't even realize was back to being slumpy (but Hammy and Rosie can't stop talking about it) at least got on base with 2 walks. Chiz upped his league-leading road average by getting TWO more hits in the afternoon game, plus a walk and a run scored.

Gomes and Swisher both had doubles. Gomes had an awesome game going 3 for 4, and since David Murphy went 2 for 2, Gomes came around to score 3 times!

Raburn was in the 9-hole, but that didn't go as well as we thought. He came up at 0 for 4.

So this afternoon's game was kind of a walk in the park, lead by Corey Kluber. I just got an awesome mental image of all that.

The night game was Zach McAllister stretching his legs before getting on the bus to Columbus, versus Cy Young Award Winner Max Scherzer. Not so much a walk in the park.

McAllister was like Bauer on Friday, in that at one point he looked awful and it seemed like we couldn't possibly win the game if he threw one pitch more...then he went on to pitch 3 1/3 more innings and only gave up 1 run in total, on 3 hits with 6 strikeouts. Oh. Well - good job, ZMac!

Axford was next and he provided some un-needed intensity with a wild pitch. But then the next two guys struck out and it was over for another day.

Atchison was next and somehow he gave up a run! It was the go-ahead run so that wasn't cool. But there was still time left and we were facing the Tiger bullpen so really it was ok. Carlos Carrasco came out in the 8th to swiftly handle Miggy, Victor and the New Martinez and he was great! Strikeout, groundout, groundout. Atta boy, Cookie! I told you that guy is a team player.

Offense wasn't nearly as exciting in this game as it was in the first game. The Tribe only got 8 hits and 6 walks, which seems like a lot but they didn't all come together until the 9th. Before that, it was just 2 runs in 8 innings.

Kipnis kept his stuff up by going 0 for 2 - with THREE WALKS. He came in to score once. Asdrubal was out, so Aviles was the shortstop and second batter. He got a sneaky little bunt hit in the 3rd but nothing came of it.

Michael Brantley (.329) could only muster 2 for 4 with one double this evening. That gives him 7 hits and 3 runs scored during this series so far. Damn!

Carlos Santana, who had been getting ragged on all day by the radio guys, came up in the 9th with the bases loaded and got a 3-run double. I don't know what it is about that guy, but he keeps coming back to impress us! I know that I don't give two shits when Nick Swisher does the exact same thing (suddenly does something good to counter-act his awful average) but Nick Swisher is a $15mm pair of new sneakers and Santana we got at the thrift store 5 years ago and damn is he comfortable.

Anyway, I still love Carlos Santana. Even though he's frustrating. It seems like he's always the dumbass kid who occasionally does something magical and right.

Chisenhall quietly ended a 6-game hitting streak by going 0-4 this evening. But he and Brantley are still 4 and 5 on the batting chart.

Swisher still plays for the team, and Murphy went back to doing nothing. Poor Murph.

Roberto Perez was in the lineup, as promised. In only his second game with us, he hit a double! They put Asdrubal in to pinch run for him. I wonder what's up with that? Don't you think a 26-year-old should be able to run even if he's a catcher? But whatever, that's what they did. And he came around to score on Santana's game-winning double. Yee-haw! I wonder how much we'll see him? Maybe just once a week?

Oh yeah so....Chris Dickerson! Here he is, by the way:
And as an Indian:
So yeah, he didn't hit yesterday and he was out for the first game today, but then he made up for all of that this evening by going yard TWICE. You know who didn't get any home runs today? All of the Tigers! Not in either game. Not Miggy, not Victor, not New Martinez, not even little Rajai Davis who got his first of 2 homers of this year off the Tribe.

Things must not have been right at Comerica for a home run today. Except for Chris Dickerson. Chris Dickerson who got two. We love you, man!

How cool is it that we came back from the break winning 3 straight against Detroit? The team is 3 games over .500. They're in second place, 4.5 games back. They're 1.5 games out of the Wild Card.

I guess we'll see Sunday when Tomlin takes on LHP 4.00. We're on the road against a lefty, where we perform better both at home and against righties.

If we can pull it out tomorrow, then it's the real deal. However it gets done, too. Real deal. If it's the real deal then get ready for a HECK of a second half!!!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"He's gotta realize there are 18 guys playing this game, not just him."
- Tom Hamilton on Miggy

"That would have been a home run in any park but here and Yellowstone."
- Tom Hamilton

"Both baserunners move up on a wild pitch. That might be an understatement."
- Jim Rosenhaus thinks it was a crazy weird wild pitch

"One good month out of four isn't what you can have."
- Tom Hamilton on Carlos Santana

"To decipher those boos...they're simply saying 'Rent, Joe. Don't buy.'"
- Tom Hamilton on the Detroit crowd's feelings about Joe Nathan

Friday, July 18, 2014

The First Day Of The Rest Of Our Season

Here's a song for you for tonight's big rivalry game post!

I just gotta laugh whenever it seems like there's a game where Everybody Hits, but not everybody hits, and instead of the odd-man-out being a lame-o like Swisher or a rando like Raburn, it's Chris Dickerson who is hitting .400 and has hit in every game he's played with us. Until tonight, of course.

But everyone else - wow! Fourteen hits tonight and 9 runs in a spectacular turnaround game, where one minute Tom Hamilton was saying how Trevor Bauer lost the ability to throw strikes and the next minute it's 7-3 Indians. I love it!

Bauer was our man on the hill tonight against Anibal Sanchez. There were rumblings wishing it was Kluber going against Sanchez but I like when Bauer goes opposite these big important guys. I think a huge part of his game is his ego and his need to prove himself and I think matchups like this are totally in his favor. He had a quality start tonight, going 6 innings and only giving up 3 runs. He struck out 5 in that time and got his first win on the road! He's 4-4 with an ERA of 3.89.

Our favorite trio of Atchison, Shaw and Allen came to finish out the game. They each had 2 baserunners but nothing came of them. No homers, no errors, nothing exciting but a double in the 9th. SHUT DOWN.

Speaking of shut down, the Tribe was shut down for 6 innings. There was much gnashing of teeth and wringing of hands. "This team!!" "They are no better than the first half!"
Actual Tribe fan
Then it was the 7th inning and hit, walk, hit - the bases were loaded with no outs. Would Swisher hit into a double play? Nope! A two-run double!

Pitching change. Would Raburn pop out to shallow right? Nope! An RBI double!

Pitching change. Al Albequerque, who has an 8.10 ERA versus the Indians this year. Now's our chance! Strikeout. Strikeout. Oh no!

Three-run homer Kipnis! Solo homer Asdrubal! Albequerque's ERA is now 11.25 versus the Indians this year!
Sad Albequerque
Michael Brantley singles again before the inning is over. He was the one who led off the inning with a single, anyway.

The Tribe goes on to score 2 more in the game. Kipnis with 2 homers, Asdrubal with one. I observed that Kipnis had 4 days no doubt at home with his mom, and suggested that perhaps his mom needs to be installed with the team. He hasn't hit one out since April 21!!

Brantley had said in a pre-game interview that the team definitely did not play up to their potential, and everybody needed to do better. So what does he do? Well he raises his average by .07 as a result of getting 4 hits, something he hasn't done yet this year [in a 9-inning game]. He also stole a base, got his 23rd double and came in to score twice. He probably would have thrown some guys out at the plate if the situation presented itself, but then again he did need to keep some stuff in his pocket for being better tomorrow.

How about that Raburn, huh? He used to be our secret weapon and the first half he was kind of a dirty little secret. He did get that homer against the Dodgers and came back with a hit against the Royals but he's just not the sure thing at the plate anymore. Tonight he went 2 for 3 AS a pinch hitter! Things look very good for us if things go very well for him the rest of the way.

We'll talk more about Swisher once he's consistently doing this stuff he did tonight. I'm not going to bite this good-game-here-and-there baloney. Put up, put ALL the way up, and then we'll talk.

When we have games like this, I'm reminded that this is the team I was waiting for in March, and the team I was pretty sure we were getting. Yes they were stifled by the starter but they both got to the starter and then super-got-to the relievers. If you're not good enough to clobber a good pitcher, be good enough to get him out of the game!

I don't know what is up with the lack of consistency. But I do know that this is the real team. The team where no one hits and runs don't score...that's the Bizarro Tribe.

Tomorrow is TWO games!! Oh man oh man! I am totally going to clean the heck out of my house and my garage during my 6 hours of baseball. I wrote it down so I can hold myself to it.

We'll get to see Roberto Perez catching. He told me on Twitter.

It'll be Kluber against a newbie RHP at 1:08 and then McAllister's return against Scherzer at 7:08. Do we have the series won already?

Can't wait to see if they break the mold and come out swinging 3 games in a row! See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"If Max Scherzer had taken that contract they offered him last year, your Little Ceasar's Hot 'n Ready pizza would only have one pepperoni on it."
- Tom Hamilton on the owner of the Tigers also owning Little Ceasar's

"There's no way you're going to second guess him. You'd better swing the bat when Sanchez is on the hill."
- Tom Hamilton

"He went to the slider one time too many."
- Tom Hamilton on Kipnis' homer

"Dave Dombrowski's calling Texas right now saying 'Whatever you want for Soria, we'll pay it.'"
- Tom Hamilton

"That's a home run in every park in America, except Comerica."
- Tom Hamilton on a missed homer, by the Tigers

"Lance Diaz says 'Hey you haven't been up here long enough to point to any place on the plate and tell me what is low.'"
- Tom Hamilton on Eugenio Suarez

"Somewhere in the Tiger clubhouse, Anibal Sanchez is standing there with a beer in his hand, staring at the wall thinking 'What happened?'"
- Tom Hamilton

Friday, July 11, 2014

New Guys! Old Guys! Everybody Looks Good!

Whew! What a day! I literally spent 5 hours glued to Twitter tweeting about Corey Kluber. My bad, if anyone was offended by that. I at least tried to be fun. I am pretty sure my 270 followers are just looking for Tribe tweets so hopefully I was safe spamming about the Tribe.

Klubes totally didn't win, either. They kept saying he was in first place but I think by the end of it he was in second place. And that didn't even matter because he was 4th overall.

But, in the wake of all of this LeBron talk and constant yammering about Not Baseball, it was fun to turn our attentions to baseball for a whole day. Especially when, soon, we'll be 4 days without it. (In Cleveland. Of course we can watch the ASG and whatnot)

Everyone was blown away by the hands-on tweeting of starter TJ House, who spent a couple hours re-tweeting #VoteKluber tweets, and doing some of his own. I mean, Vinnie Pestano was in there with us too but it was super special to have House reaching out to fans like that on the day he was slated to start! Of course we were also worried that maybe he was going to affect his performance but really what you want out of your sports teams is reaching out to the fans, right? It's why we haven't run Swisher out of town yet.

Anyway, TJ House didn't fare as well on the mound as he did on Twitter. Whoops! He only lasted 4 2/3 innings. Not so much because he gave up 3 runs but because he threw 94 pitches in that time and despite his manly beard he is only a sprout. He gave up 8 hits and 2 walks, and found himself having to work out of a lot of jams. Still dig him, though. Not like he imploded or anything!

Here's his #VoteKluber Vine (with a little Vinnie Bomb):

It took 5 relievers to finish out the game, which is pretty rough because they had the extra innings yesterday. But they were pretty solid giving up just 3 hits between them and no runs. Back to no runs for that bullpen yaaaaaas!

Vinnie got to come in early instead of late, so that was nice. Little Kyle Crockett was in there too. Carrasco, Atchison and Hagadone followed. Hagadone had a nice 9th. After giving up a single the boys had a sweet double play behind him, and that final out was a strikeout whose final pitch seemed to go 4 different directions before landing in the catcher's glove. BALLGAME!

The offense kept trying to get going all through the game, but nothing happened for keeps until the 7th inning. They did get 5 hits and 3 walks in those first 6 innings but nothing came of it. Once again, not stringing things together.

However, in that 7th inning it was one string after another!

Kipnis was HAWT again today, this time going 3 for 4 with 2 more steals and 2 runs scored. That's 7 hits for him in the 3 games since Jason Kipnis Bobblehead Day! Also 5 stolen bases, woah. Seems like he's very focused/determined to start stealing more now. Dirtbag!

Asdrubal had a night!! He got 3 hits last night but tonight he got three RBI as in a 3-RBI triple! He also walked, got a single and came in to score a run. Only 2 LOB for him tonight. The people are singing his praises once again!

Michael Brantley (.327) is just amazing and we love him. He went 2 for 4 tonight, extending his hitting streak to 7. He's got 17 hits in the last 10 games, and has only had one 0-for game in the month of July. Also, he is featured in a science book:
Not really Brantley but....right??
Santana was almost left out of things today but in the 8th he let loose with a 2-run homer! That's 8 hits for his last 8 games, as well as 4 total RBI. Not really out there with a huge average like we like to see but boy isn't it nice to have him reliable again? Instead of reliably unreliable.

The Chiz Kid is kind of limping along lately, huh? His average has dipped 20 points in 10 games. Tonight he went 1 for 4 with a walk. HOWEVER - he finally is qualified! This means he's had at least 3.1 plate appearances for every game the team has played. With at least 4 or 5 PA each game he should be able to keep ahead of the qualification even if he has one day off a week.

Since he's qualified, he and Brantley are now both in the top 10 in the league for batting average. I saw a quick graphic today saying that it's the first time two Indians since blah blah blah but I totally didn't catch the statistic! If anyone knows, let me know! But check out this list of the top 10. Those are some BIG NAMES!! And our boys right in the middle. So proud!
Poor David Murphy. The Lord did not want him hitting again today. He was the only Indian not to hit. But he did make a topical Kluber Vine:

So check it out - Chris Dickerson is on his 4th game with us and he went 3 for 4 tonight, giving him a total of 7 hits in 4 games! Woah nelly! It seems like we got ourselves another "washed up" gem from the minors! He had some kind of injury that sent him there and he just never came back to the Pirates, until they traded him to us for cash. And geez - SO FAR SO GOOD!!! We seriously have a glut of outfielders this year. Blessed!

Speaking of blessed, today was the first Major League game for catcher Roberto Perez. He's come up through our minors system, from Kinston to Akron to Columbus where he's been hitting .305. According to Jim Rosenhaus, they swapped out George Kottaras for him because he's much better at throwing guys out. Ah well, Kottaras, we hardly knew ye.

Here's Perez:
He's from Puerto Rico. He doesn't really look like a Roberto, does he? Looks more like a Robby. In fact he looks a lot like the one kid I grew up with named Robby. A bit of a badass in him for sure. Exhibit B:

But whatever he goes by,  hopefully it's always followed by "Cleveland Indians"! Perez not only got his first hit tonight, he also got his first home run! He's only got 8 in the minors so it's not like he's a big hitter but right now he is! Unfortunately for him, I guess, his homer was the result of a review and a reversal. So all he got was a call of an RBI double from Tom Hamilton, and then several minutes later "It's a home run!" (Which interrupted Rosie and caught me by surprise!) He'll have to have an asterisk next to it in his mind - first home run, first home run with proper radio call.

If he does well and Santana keeps doing well at first, well then we might have things all figured out for the Indians! With as little Swisher as possible!

So, split series with Yankees! Still a little bit under .500 but I think we're primed and ready to face those White Sox (stupid Chris Sale and his stupid Twitter fans!) and end up in a good spot going in to the ASG.

Tomorrow is a 7:05 game with everyone's favorite person at the moment, Corey Kluber, versus RHP 4.31. Wow, it could be another blowout! Would be great if Klubes could give us a 7- or 8-inning start (or 9, NOT PICKY) and save that bullpen that's seen a lot of innings these past couple days. He owes us all now!

See you there!

Radio Chatter:
"Tito says players don't seem to be so strong anymore..."
- Tom Hamilton on Tito's interpretation of the inconsistent play in the MLB lately

"When was the last time you saw a major league pitcher catch a popup? Usually the infielders are in there screaming 'get out of the way!' But Pestano says 'Hey, I'm an athlete.'"
- Tom Hamilton

"Are you here all week? Should we tip our waitstaff on our way out?"
- Jim Rosenhaus thinks Tom Hamilton is a real comedian

"That's one of those games - you didn't get beat, you lost it."
- Tom Hamilton on Wednesday's game

"Boy that was like he took an uppercut from Mike Tyson."
- Tom Hamilton on the umpire being hit in the 8th

"Joe Girardi is saying to Miller 'Well, you're going to have to take one for the team.'"
- Tom Hamilton on the Yankees leaving their reliever in

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Ugh - Yankees

Well, they tried to get back to .500 today! They fought hard for 14 innings and in the end, it just didn't happen.

Stupid Mark Teixeira. Stupid Jacoby Ellsbury. Stupid DEREK JETER.

Josh Tomlin and his hair put up 7 innings, which rocks, but he let 4 runs go in that time. Two homers to Teixeira! He struck out 5, and kept the hits down to 8 - with no walks! But 4 was enough to tie it and wear us down over 5 extra innings.

They had to use 6 relievers tonight over 7 innings (5 extra). Atchison, Shaw, Allen, Axford, Zep, Pestano. They combined for EIGHT strikeouts! Ichiro struck out 3 times on the night, and their shortstop Ryan struck out 4. Golden Sombrero! They gave up 4 hits and 3 walks but kept getting out of it. Solid as usual.

In the end, it was Vinnie who gave up the homer to stupid Ellsbury, and that was enough to win. Oh Vinnie!!

The offense wasn't very helpful tonight, though. Twelve hits and 11 LOB! Wat?! At one point they had the bases loaded after 3 walks, with 1 out and...well, we didn't win.

Both Kipnis and Cabrera were UP tonight! Two more hits for Kipnis at leadoff, and Cabrera followed up with 3 hits of his own! Both came around to score once. Unfortunately, no RBI for those guys.

I'm totally diggin' Brantley-Santana-Chisenhall. Aren't you? Feels like a super power trio! And when Kipnis and Cabrera are on their upswings that is one HOT half of the order!

Erm, well, except today when Kipnis and Cabrera got 5 hits and Brantley-Santana-Chisenhall left 4-3-5 on base. Oops!

Brantley and Santana did have the patience today. They each got a hit, but they also each walked. Santana twice. Chisenhall didn't get a hit but a FC or something drove in a run.

Brantley totally almost won the game, along with some aggressive baserunning by Kipnis but...well, Cleveland. Someone made a spectacular catch.

Nick Swisher still plays for the Indians.

David Murphy got a hit, and had a nice play in the outfield. Yan Gomes didn't hit but he also didn't error so that's good.

Chris Dickerson! He's played 3 games with us now and is batting .364 - that's even better than Kottaras numbers! Dickerson went 2 for 6 tonight but it was a bummer that he didn't get an RBI and no one hit him in.

Despite the loss after all that time, it was a fun game with all those extra innings. It's fun to be on the edge of your seat - sometimes!

Tomorrow is one more game against these Stankees, and TOMORROW is Jeter Day. For some reason I thought it was today. A 7:05 start, TJ House versus RHP 4.01. Not a problem, right?

I'll actually be missing my first game of the season tomorrow! A friend has extra tickets to a thing. Tomorrow woulda been a good day for extra innings! But oh least it's the end of the Yankee fan infestation.

See you there! (After the show)