Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Omar squeezes Tribe in return to Cleveland

He's not a prima donna like a lot of players of today. Us middle-aged guys grew up with players that actually loved to play the game and it's great to see a guy who plays baseball because he loves baseball."

The words of Tribe fan Glenn Sawyer, as quoted by MLB.com.

He was of course talking about Omar Vizquel, who returned to the place he knows as "The Jake" to receive the accolades of Tribe fans of all ages and, while he was at it, drive in what turned out to be the game-winning run with a perfectly executed suicide squeeze.

The bunt put Omar's San Francisco Giants up 3-1 in the 9th inning of a game that ended 3-2 and brought back memories of the good old days when he wore a Tribe uniform on those great teams of the 90's.

For the first 7 innings, Omar showed that time is indeed catching up with him.

Vizquel was 0-for-3 to that point and had left the bases loaded in the 7th with the score tied 1-1, having lifted a lazy fly to Grady Sizemore.

But in the ninth Vizquel flashed back to the days when he was the grease for the big machine that was the Tribe offense, laying down a perfect suicide squeeze that Casey Blake couldn't handle - not that he would have been able to do much except throw Omar out at first had he fielded it cleanly.

For good measure - with runners on 1st and 3rd and one out and the Tribe down 2 runs in the 9th - Omar went deep into the hole at SS, did a patented Omar spin-and-throw which had just enough on it to throw out at 2B a guy who would never have gotten a glove on the ball. Yes, Jhonny Peralta. If the ball goes through, it's 3-2 Tribe with 1 out and 2 on instead of 2 out and 1 on.

So, perhaps taking away some deserved credit from SF starter Jonathan Sanchez (though he did pitch his gem against the hitless wonders in Cleveland uniforms), the hero tonight is Omar Vizquel. And there's no surprise there.

While a part of me is happy for Omar, the rest of me is ticked.

Perhaps I'm pissed off because I looked up to see my stupid dog inexplicably pissing on the living room floor in the top of the 8th as the Tribe bullpen began to piss away the game away.

That didn't help.

But mostly I just can't keep watching the same old thing - a good (or at least gutty) performance by tonight's starter Aaron Laffey, a bullpen that blows the lead then widens the deficit and a so-called offense that is just plain offensive.

The game ended - classically - with a strikeout by Kelly Shoppach with the tying run in scoring position. It was just one of 11 K's on the night as the Tribe continues to pile up unbelievably high K totals night after night.

Earlier in the ninth, Ryan Garko put up one of the ugliest at-bats of the year, following up two singles to start the inning with a 3-pitch K that was just awful.

I could go on about Shoppach's throwing error that allowed the second SF run to score. Or the 3 K's overall by the guy who "would be a starting catcher on most other teams."

But why go on. It's the same old thing night in and night out.

By the way, anyone wonder why the Tribe continues to pile up has-beens at Buffalo. The latest two to join the Bisons are reliever Juan Rincon and infielder Tony Graffanino.

The duo joins starter John Halama and corner infielder Morgan Ensberg as recent retreads to join the Bisons as Tribe signees.

Are they piling up warm bodies to take the positions of some young guys they may bring up when the trading begins. We know Asdrubal Cabrera will be on his way back up before too long. Who else may be heading down I-90?

Or are they piling up these C-listers to fill out the major league roster when the purge begins? And won't that be fun? It'll be 2003 all over again.

Whatever the case, I've spent way too much time tonight thinking about a team that clearly doesn't deserve this much of my attention.


bobbydb19 said...

Can we officially put the final nail in the coffin?

This is with out a doubt the worst! I don't care (obviously, I do becasue I am posting a message), but seriously, this roller coaster to no-where is getting ridiculous. Instead of being upset, I now laugh when I see that they are losing.

Barry Zito? Barry "f**king" Zito? Are you serious? The dude was 2-11. The Tribe made him look like a Cy Young award winner. WTF?

Please end this. Lets see who will be playing for us in 2009. Please just end this. The only thing I am going to take from 2008 is that we beat the Yankees in the season series. Thats it. That is what I am hanging my hat on for 2008.

To quote the screen on my TV after every Tribe loss "Good Night".

bobbydb19 said...

Hey..guess what? The Royals are winning in 7th. If they win, our beloved Tribe will be in last by themselves. Yeah! I am going to be sick.

Ron Vallo said...

I'm watching that Royals-Rockies game on the dish right now. (Why? I don't know.) KC up 4-2 bottom 8 at home. If they hold on the only team in the AL with a worse record than Cleveland will be Seattle. Take out the three division leaders that puts the Tribe in 10th place for the Wild Card 10 1/2 behind the Rays. They'll be at least 7 1/2 behind the SOX and maybe 8 1/2. They are completely lifeless and hapless. I just can't imagine how anyone can think the still have a shot at anything this year even though "it's only June."