Posts By Bob Toth
It’s déjà vu all over again for the Cleveland Indians as they take on the Kansas City Royals for the second time in as many weeks. This time the location is different as the series moves to Kauffman Stadium, home of the Royals since 1973.
The Indians hit the road for a brief vacation from Cleveland after splitting a four-game series with the Toronto Blue Jays. The Jays claimed a game one 5-1 win on Thursday as a five-run fourth gave the club all the runs they would need on the night. The Tribe bounced back Friday night with a 9-4 win as the Indians matched each Toronto score in the immediate half inning and then added some extra runs of their own in the fourth and fifth. The Indians bullpen made a manageable deficit a blowout on Saturday afternoon, as a 4-2 game when they entered in the sixth became an 11-4 loss. A six-run Toronto fourth inning on Sunday could have been Cleveland’s undoing, but the Indians responded back with six of their own in the fifth on the way to a 10-7 victory to avoid another series loss.
Did the Tribe Win Last Night? In miraculous and come-from-behind fashion, yes! A six-run fourth inning for Toronto off of Cleveland starter Trevor Bauer put the Indians at a substantial disadvantage, but his offensive teammates picked him up two innings later, scoring six of their own in the fifth on the way to a 10-7 victory Sunday afternoon.
After reclaiming the lead, the Indians bullpen kept the Blue Jays potent lineup off of the scoreboard until the ninth, when Cleveland had extended their lead to four runs.
The Indians were powered by the top four hitters in the lineup, who combined for ten hits in 14 at bats (.714) with six of the day’s RBI and eight of the runs scored.
WP: M. Rzepczynski (1-0) LP: J. Francis (1-1)
The April portion of the 2015 season is now part of the historical record. While there have been a lot of surprises and disappointments around the league, one of the biggest mysteries may be the zero in the win column of reigning American League Cy Young Award winning pitcher, Corey Kluber.
Pitchers in professional baseball are used to being victimized by the opposing team on occasion. A much smaller percentage of these pitchers are used to being victimized by their own team. That situation has applied very noticeably to Kluber so far this season.
Kluber has had the unenviable task of trying to pitch with little to no run support throughout his first five April starts and even into his first start of the month of May. In April alone, the Indians supplied him with seven runs while he was the pitcher of record in the center of the diamond. Even after he exited the game, Cleveland managed only three more runs.
“We won a game yesterday. We win one today, that’s “two in a row”. We win one tomorrow, that’s called a “winning streak”. It has happened before…” – Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona, probably. But actually, spoken by fictional Indians manager Lou Brown in the movie Major League II.
Maybe the Indians could use an unfamiliar face, as all of the usual suspects in April have been unfriendly. Cleveland will welcome the Toronto Blue Jays to town on Thursday for a four-game set, marking the first non-American League Central rival to grace the grass at Progressive Field this season and just the second non-divisional opponent to suit up against the Indians this season.