Monday, July 4, 2016

Tonight's game

OK, as I watched tonight's game some things came to mind I wanted to share:
  • Danny Salazar sucked.   OK, that is a relative term when you are talking about Salazar.   Who knows how much the rain delay threw him off?  But he executed just enough pitches to be mostly successful.   But he screwed up enough to leave tied 3-3.
  • The Indians screwed up multiple times with runners on second and third and zero or one outs.   As a matter of fact, only Lindor did ANYTHING in those ABs
  • Uribe has not looked good to me all season.   He is overweight, doesn't look very athletic and doesn't look like he could play any other position right now but 3B, and he doesn't even do that well at all.  As a matter of fact, he looks clumsy, just like he did tonight falling all over himself grabbing that line drive.   Which would be acceptable if he hit.  But he isn't hitting and looked silly at times tonight.  With Chamberlain, Gorzelanny and others getting bumped off the roster for not very good production, I am rooting for Uribe to be gone soon.  With Francona's deep bullpen and concomitant short bench there is no room for a guy like Uribe and Francona and Antonetti should have learned from keeping Bourn and Swisher too long for their 'veteran presence'.    I would bring up Urshela whose defense will only make this staff better and who should probably hit as well as Uribe is now.  This would free up Ramirez to be the super utility guy and not force us to put him at 3B in the late innings.
  • Gomes?  Man, realistically, watching him tonight and recently, half the pitchers in the national league have as good or better a chance to get a hit than this guy.  I have seen him a couple of games now and he is just pathetic and as close to an automatic out as I have seen in the last few years in the American league.   I don't know if it is injury related (left shoulder issues? his knee ruining his 'base' as a hitter (supposedly happened to Mark McGwire at the end of his career)) but Gomes is just pathetic and it is killing us.  Given his pitch calling last night (i.e., asking Salazar to keep throwing the changeup he was hanging) I wonder about him defensively, too.
  • Almonte?  Why is this guy playing at all?  He was bad before he came to the Indians last year and he is bad now.   Having Gomes, Uribe and Almonte at the bottom of this order just killed us tonight.  We can't keep doing that as it REALLY hurt us tonight.  If guys like Chamberlain and Gorzelanny can be DFA'd how can Almonte and Uribe still be with us?  I mean last year we put a thirdbaseman in RF and he solidified our OF defense and he hit.  By that I mean that there are plenty of ways for this team to get better, even some out-of-the-box ways like Chisenhall last year, than I still don't get why Naquin is not playing all the time.  Almonte should be stashed at AAA for an emergency only.
  • Bryan Shaw was just good enough to not get killed in the 8th.   He is walking a tight rope every time out, it seems, but he is staying on the wire.   
  • Cody Allen was good enough in the 9th to save the game.  My only question is would he have done it against the top of their order?  I mean even Mark Lowe and his 10.44 ERA and Dustin Molleken and his 30+year old major league debut were able to get outs from the bottom of our order.  
So what does it all mean?   The Indians could have clearly lost this game.  Did the Tigers' 9-game losing streak this season play a part in tonight's loss?  I don't think so.  They were on a roll coming in and had all the confidence in the world when you consider getting to Salazar and getting outs from their bad bullpen guys. Did our fans play a part in this win?   Sadly, as much as I love to see the stands full, no, they didn't play a big part in this victory. 

Then how did they win?  It was a team effort, it was a gritty effort. They were just good enough and guys (Lindor, Napoli) stepped up to make plays.  Just enough plays to make us win.  

Hey, this is Cleveland.  In past years we would have never won 14 in a row and if we did have a winning streak, at least in my opinion, we would have found a way to lose this game.   Of all the games I have seen this year although this one wasn't pretty it showed me one thing: This Indians' team is for real.   We have to tighten some things up (including hoping for a miracle with Gomes' hitting) and we still need to solidify the bullpen and get a great outfield hitter but I think we can get to the post-season and, if we add the right pieces and stay healthy and fix the glaring things we need to, I think we can win it all.

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