Ervin Santana No-Hits Tribe; Angels 3, Indians 1
By Mike Brandyberry
In a season that started so promising, the Indians may have hit rock bottom today. Nothing about the game this game was pretty. The game was not on television locally and the team is probably grateful for that decision. The Indians made five errors, a passed ball and were no-hit by Ervin Santana Wednesday afternoon. Not even a pretty no-hitter, as the Angels defeated the Indians 2-1.
The story of the day was Santana. On only 105 pitches, Santana allowed only two base runners for the game. He allowed no hits, only one walk and struck out nine. Indians hitters seemed to have no approach to handle Santana.
Ezequiel Carrera reached on an error in the bottom of the first by Erik Aybar. After stealing second base and advancing to third on a ground ball by Asdrubal Cabrera. Carrera scored on a wild pitch by Santana and the Indians had an early 1-0 lead.
After the first inning, it was very difficult to find any positives for the Indians. David Huff pitched very well, surviving errors by Lonnie Chisenhall, Cabrera and Austin Kearns. Huff competed well, following up his seven shutout innings last week in Minnesota, but could only pitch into the sixth today. Having to pitch through three errors runs the pitch count up quickly and Huff left the game after five and two-third innings and 92 pitches.
Huff was able to pitch through the errors, but a misplayed ball by Michael Brantley off the left field wall allowed Peter Bourjos to lead off the fifth inning. Bourjos scored on a Mike Trout sacrifice fly. The Angels took the lead in the sixth inning when Carlos Santana could not handle a pitch. After kicking the ball down the first base line, Torii Hunter was able to score and make it a 2-1 Angels lead.
The Angels added another run in the ninth when Bourjos singled, stole second base and was able to advance to third on Carlos Santana’s throwing error. Howie Kendrick promptly singled to score Bourjos
While Ervin Santana was certainly dominant today, the effort by the Indians, in a race for the Central Division crown is inexcusable. Poor defense and fundamentals have hurt the team as much as their pathetic offense. With an off day on Thursday, the team may be forced to finally make a trade if they wish to stay in contention. However, one player is not going to fix the problems the team is currently facing. The team has to start making more contact and revert back to the “Acta Ball” the team played in the first two months, otherwise, no single trade can save this team from squandering a chance at the playoffs.
The Kansas City Royals come to town on Friday. The team may have some new offensive help, but if the team can not play better defensively, especially from Carlos Santana, and get some hits from Matt LaPorta, the Indians are about to flame out in the summer heat.