2019: Enjoy Him
A complete game shutout on Father’s Day helped earn Cleveland’s Trevor Bauer the American League’s Player of the Week Award for games played between June 10 and June 16.
Bauer’s shutout on Sunday was the first of his career and he was rewarded again for the effort with the first Player of the Week Award of his career. It marked a needed change in direction for Bauer, who had lost five straight decisions before taking home a win on June 16 to secure a sweep for Cleveland over the Detroit Tigers.
Trevor Bauer went the distance for the third time in his career on Sunday, firing his first professional shutout in a four-hit 8-0 gem over the Detroit Tigers from Comerica Park.
Needing to pick up their play against the American League Central Division, the Cleveland Indians (37-33) did that this weekend in securing a series sweep over the fourth place Tigers, moving to 5-1 on the year against their divisional foe. They did so in fairly dominating fashion to boot, outscoring the host club 25-6 in a series highlighted by impressive starting pitching and a healthy offensive contribution from Cleveland.
The Indians made a handful of minor roster moves on Saturday, highlighted by a waiver claim of pitcher Jordan Stephens from the Chicago White Sox.
A 26-year-old right-handed pitcher, Stephens was added to the 40-man roster as a result of the waiver claim and optioned to Double-A Akron. To make room on the 40-man for Stephens, outfielder Bradley Zimmer was transferred from the 10-day to the 60-day injured list while rehabbing his right shoulder injury.
For four innings, the Indians could not strike through against left-hander Gregory Soto, fresh up from Triple-A Toledo to head up a bullpen game for the Tigers. Once he left the mound, the Indians put together a big inning and used another strong pitching performance from Bieber, who struck out a dozen, to hold on for victory.
Jake Bauers hit for the first Indians cycle since 2016 and the offense used a season-high eight-run fourth inning to rout the Detroit Tigers in a 13-4 win on Friday night.
The Cleveland offense enjoyed its series opener at Comerica Park despite losing an early 2-0 lead. After falling behind in the third, the team batted around while putting up eight runs in the fourth and tacked on three more runs for good measure to easily defeat the host Tigers. Six different Tribe hitters had multi-hit games, including a three-hit day from Roberto Perez and a cycle for Bauers, who needed his last at bat in the eighth to become the ninth Cleveland player in the 119-year history of the organization to get a single, double, triple, and homer in the same game.
Just as things appeared to be spiraling into the abyss, the Indians won some big games against some of the top competition in the American League over the last few weeks.
While stories across the country have focused on which players the Indians should look to purge by the July 31 deadline, the team has instead showed surprising signs of life after dealing with a slew of injuries to their starting rotation and operating an offense as inconsistent as they come. Buried still deep behind the Minnesota Twins, who have an 11-game lead in the American League Central (just a half-game short of the Indians’ biggest deficit to Minnesota this season), the Tribe has a giant mountain to climb in a division that they were supposed to run away with. While the magic eight ball may indicate “Outlook Not So Good” for the Indians’ chances of chasing down the still surging Twins, the team is only 1.5 games in back of the Texas Rangers for the second American League Wild Card spot.
Mike Clevinger’s rehab start in Akron on Tuesday night was much more in line with the Indians’ hopes than his first game back with the Columbus Clippers while recovering from a right upper back/Teres major muscle strain. Now, he is in line to return to the Show next week.
The 28-year-old’s next start is tentatively scheduled for Monday, opening Cleveland’s four-game series in Texas against the American League Wild Card contending Rangers. Clevinger’s return marks an impressive turnaround time from an injury that was supposed to prevent him from throwing for six to eight weeks, not counting the additional time needed to build up strength and rehab.
The Cincinnati Reds used eight extra base hits, including four home runs, to split its two-game set in Cleveland in a 7-2 final over rookie right-hander Zach Plesac and the Indians on Wednesday afternoon.
The Reds came out swinging against the young Tribe hurler, making his fourth Major League start. He ran into some early troubles before settling down to retire 13 in a row, but Cincinnati broke things open for good with runs in four straight innings in the back half of the game to split their quick trip to Cleveland.
Oscar Mercado has made the most out of his first opportunity as a Major Leaguer and he added another scene to his growing highlight reel on Tuesday night, driving in the winning run in the bottom of the tenth inning with a bases loaded one-out single to left to give the Cleveland Indians a 2-1 victory over the visiting Cincinnati Reds.
In a game knotted up since the top of the fifth, neither team put up much of a fight until the Tribe’s at bats in extra frames in game one of a quick two-gamer from downtown Cleveland. A well-pitched battle between Trevor Bauer and Luis Castillo was left in the hands of the bullpens, and the Indians were able to strike through with a big inning against Reds closer Raisel Iglesias to earn another walk-off celebration.
In a minor move on June 7, the Cleveland Indians traded minor league catcher Tim Federowicz to the Texas Rangers for a player to be named later.
Federowicz had appeared in 26 games for the Indians’ top farm affiliate, the Columbus Clippers, hitting .278 with a .353 on-base percentage, six doubles, two homers, and 13 RBI.
The Indians rallied back from a 5-0 hole on Sunday and tied the game with two outs in the bottom of the ninth on the second error of the inning by the Yankees, but two doubles in the tenth gave New York a 7-6 win over Cleveland.
With Masahiro Tanaka pushed back from his scheduled start on Sunday due to the birth of his second child, the Yankees went with a bullpen game. The Indians essentially did the same as Shane Bieber was chased from the mound with just two outs in the second inning as the Yankees put up an early five-spot to take a big lead.
The Indians spoiled the final regular season start in Cleveland for longtime Tribe southpaw CC Sabathia and claimed another big series win over a playoff caliber opponent on Saturday afternoon with an 8-4 win over the New York Yankees.
Playing in his 19th and final Major League season, the Sabathia farewell tour made its stop in Cleveland with a big milestone on the line for the left-hander. Looking for his 250th career win in his last Progressive Field start (his home for eight big league seasons), Sabathia was good in the early going, but ran into trouble late and was bested by Adam Plutko, who was called up from Triple-A Columbus for a spot start for the Tribe.