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Spot-Starter Swarzek Shuts Down Tribe; Twins 3, Indians 1... July 23, 2014 | Craig Gifford
Sabourin’s Season an Unexpected Cycle of Events... July 23, 2014 | Rob McLamb
Killer C’s? Crockett and Carrasco Deserve Bigger Roles... July 23, 2014 | Steve Eby
Carlos Santana fell a triple shy of the cycle and Danny Salazar pitched five innings to get the win in his return as the Cleveland Indians pounded the Minnesota Twins 8-2 Tuesday night at Target Field.
It was Salazar’s first appearance since he was optioned to Triple-A Columbus on May 16. Former Indians prospect Yohan Pino took the mound for the Twins.
Carlos Santana (4 hits, 2 RBI) led off the second inning with a double that just missed clearing the right field wall by a foot. Pino hit Lonnie Chisenhall and Nick Swisher (3 hits) singled to load the bases for Yan Gomes (2 hits, RBI). Pino painted a fastball on the outside corner to strike out Gomes, but David Murphy followed with a two-run single to give the Tribe an early 2-0 lead. Mike Aviles brought Swisher home with a sac fly to center to make it 3-0.
Last Wednesday afternoon, Francisco Lindor finished batting practice in Altoona, Pa. and looked out across the field as the best players in the Eastern League prepared for their All-Star Game. While he might not admit it, he was the best player on the field.
Lindor, the highest rated prospect in the game, has been an All-Star at every level of the minor leagues he has played in and a three-time selection for the SiriusXM Future’s Game. Since being drafted as the eighth overall selection in the 2011 First Year Player Draft, Lindor has been the Indians’ highest rated prospect—and possibly the most humble and grounded. Lindor was promoted from Double-A Akron after last night’s game to Triple-A Columbus. Now, the switch-hitting shortstop has just one step left in his progression.
“I hope so, we’ll see,” Lindor said when he was asked if he thought this would be his last minor league All-Star game. “I just have to continue to play and be me. I continue to enjoy every single second of the minor leagues. Every time I put on the uniform, I just want to enjoy it. Every time you put on the uniform is one less day that I’ve got.”
It’s a good time to be a Cleveland sports fan.
Well, it’s not an acutely painful time to be a Cleveland sports fan – which is what passes for optimism.
And Scott O’Brien was so giddy after a certain Northeast …
They used three center fielders and two shortstops in Monday night’s game against the Minnesota Twins, but the Indians still fell one run short, dropping the series opener 4-3.
The Cleveland Indians came just one win short of creating the perfect start to the second half of the season by taking three of four from the first place Detroit Tigers to trim two games off of their American League Central Division deficit. They will look to continue to close the gap as they make their first appearance of the season, and their first since clinching the AL Wild Card last season, at Target Field to take on the Minnesota Twins for three games this week.
The Indians (50-48) made a long overdue trip back above the .500 mark in bashing the Bengals in four games over the weekend to hit their high water mark of three games to the plus side before dropping Sunday’s finale. They overcame a three run Tigers advantage with a seven run seventh inning in a 9-3 win on Friday night. They doubled up Detroit with a pair of wins in a double dip on Saturday, winning by 6-2 and 5-2 finals, aided by a ninth inning, two-out, three-run double by Carlos Santana in the late game. They dropped a 5-1 decision on Sunday afternoon to fall short of their first ever four-game road sweep of the Motor City Kitties.
Columbus Clippers veteran starting pitcher Kyle Davies isn’t afraid of hard work. He’s been doing it all his life, on and off the baseball field. In the offseason, the 30-year-old right-hander from Decatur, Georgia used to work construction with his father.
“I used to a long time ago,” Davies said. “My father owns a construction company and builds McDonald’s restaurants. It’s something to fall back on.”
His hard work ethic has the Indians organization, fans, and Davies optimistic as he tries to return to the big leagues following a major shoulder surgery in 2012.
It’s a column I crafted a year ago as the Indians closed in on the trade deadline, but now that the Tribe has taken three of four from the Detroit Tigers this weekend, the trade talk will begin again with fans wanting the organization to be buyers for a second-half push. Considering the injuries and inconsistent starting pitching in the first 97 games, a starting pitcher or right-handed hitting outfielder could certainly help the roster. With 10 days until the non-waiver trade deadline, rumors will begin to swirl concerning players on the trade block and if they are adequate fits for the Tribe’s hopeful return to the postseason.
Before putting on your at-home general manager hat, calling sports talk radio shows or Tweeting your favorite baseball blogger or analyst, consider a couple of rules in making trades (especially for the Cleveland Indians).
1. Your Trash is Not Another Team’s Treasure
In the days of the Cleveland Cavaliers playoff runs, this could have been called the “Damon Jones, Donyell Marshall and Ira Newble” clause, but the idea still holds true. Now, it’s the Cavs attempt to land Kevin Love, without trading Andrew Wiggins. You can’t trade guys you no longer want, yet bring back players who make a substantial difference in a pennant race.
Three out of four ain’t bad.
After taking the first three games in a four game series with Detroit, the Cleveland Indians were unable to complete the sweep on Sunday afternoon, losing 5-1. Josh Tomlin allowed a pair of runs early and then Detroit made the most of a pair of two-out rallies to steal the final game. Drew Smyly kept the Indians offense stymied for seven, strong innings and the Tiger bullpen held the Tribe quiet late.
Cleveland was trying to issue their first four-game sweep of the Tigers in Detroit in franchise history, but the offense that has been so timely and clutch in the late innings could not make the most of opportunities in the final game. The Tribe was 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position on the afternoon.
There has been a notable force missing from the Cleveland Indians lineup for the majority of this season. His name is Jason Kipnis.
If the Indians have any plans on contending throughout the second half, they will need his bat and his athleticism on the field to be at the top of his game.
The play of late from Kipnis may be an indication that he is finally starting to come back into his own and find a groove at the plate, even if the power numbers have not been as prevalent as Cleveland fans have come to know.
Chris Dickerson wowed Indians fans with a pair of home runs Saturday night, but it was Carlos Santana who saved the day, hitting a three-run double in the top of the ninth that ultimately provided the margin of victory in a 5-2 win in the nightcap of a doubleheader.
The win gave the Indians the sweep of the doubleheader. It’s their third win in a row since the All-Star break, all against the American League Central-leading Tigers.