Monday, September 3, 2007

Off and running!

The Indians kicked off perhaps their most important road trip of the year with a big 5-0 win today against Johan Santana and the Twins.

It's the fifth time the Tribe has beaten Minnesota's ace this year. The Tribe has lost only one game Santana has started against them in '07, but that one became a bullpen battle and neither starter got a decision.

Last time we looked at the Tribe's offense against Santana. Today, looking briefly at the Twins offense against the Tribe in those games, we see the other side of the coin.

Minnesota has scored a total of eight runs in Santana's five losses to Cleveland this year. They have been shut out twice and have not scored more than three runs in any of Santana's losses to the Tribe. Fausto Carmona has beaten the Twins' ace lefty twice, while CC Sabathia has beaten him thrice.

One thing I liked about the Tribe win today was the way they continued to add on against Santana and the Twins. They did not manage more than one run in any inning, but did score in five of the first seven innings. Last time, you'll recall, they scored four in the first and had to hold on to win 4-3. Today's attack was nice and balanced, if not spectacular.

A couple of other things:

Does anyone have an explantion for Wedge's decision to pinch run Grady Sizemore for Chris Gomez in the sixth inning? The score was four - zip and the Twins had four more at-bats to go. Seems like an unusual way to use up your best bench hitter in a not-so-crucial spot - especially since they never started up Sizemore to steal and set up an insurance run. It really made little sense.

Is it just me, or does it feel like Alexi Casilla - hitting .230 going into today - is always on base against the Tribe? The Twins' second baseman went four-for-four today and is eight for his last 12 against Cleveland.

The Tribe benefited today from the ping-pong table that doubles as a playing field at the Twinkie Dome. Travis Hafner shot a ball to the right of second base in the seventh that might have been a tough-luck groundout on grass, and certainly would have been no more than a single. Instead the ball went all the way to the wall, allowing Asdrubal Cabrera to score from first and Hafner to lumber into second. The Twins can't move to their new stadium fast enough for me.

I spoke with five different Yankee fans today at the swim club in my NYC suburban town. All five seem to think (finally) that the Yanks may be in a bit of trouble. And that was before they learned that Roger Clemens was sent for an MRI on his right elbow after his abbreviated outing today. My guess is it was just the anger of the moment and these self-entitled Yankee fans will wake up tomorrow once again feeling like the World Series is theirs for the taking.

1 comment:

moose said...

yep yankees in BIG trouble - they dont play the Indians anymore - only tampa bay and seattle - tell your swimming buddies - the yankees are drowning and barely treading water

CC for Cy young !! who has been more consistent

good patience at the plate - keep it up

put the pressure on detroit
one game at a time