Derek Holland‘s dominance of the Indians throughout his career continued on Wednesday night as he brought a no-hitter into the sixth inning and the White Sox bullpen held off a late Tribe threat as Chicago defeated Cleveland, 2-1.
After spending his entire career with the Texas Rangers, the lefty Holland relocated to the Windy City in the offseason on a one-year, $6 million deal. It looks to be a move that could prolong his career nicely, as he should have a few more opportunities than usual to pitch against the Indians this season.
If Congressional representatives in Ohio, South Carolina, and New Jersey – among other states – get their way, Larry Doby could soon be in some select company.
Ohio’s senators – Democrat Sherrod Brown, an avowed Indians fan, and Republican Rob Portman – have introduced legislation to make Doby the latest recipient of a Congressional Gold Medal, and U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (R-Wadsworth) has proposed the same bill in the House.
Indians fans have waited since November 2nd of last year to cheer on their team at Progressive Field and the long wait for the return of baseball in Cleveland was worth it as Michael Brantley delivered an opposite field double down the left field line to score Francisco Lindor all the way from first base with two outs in the bottom of the tenth inning as the Tribe walked off with a 2-1 win over the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday night.
On a day full of all of the pomp and circumstance deserving of a home opener, the Indians fought through a tough day at the plate with quality work from the pitching staff and the big clutch hit from Brantley to save the day. Prior to the game, a banner commemorating the club’s 2016 American League championship was unfurled in the upper deck in right field and players received their championship rings on the field before earning win one of many at their downtown home, despite going 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position while stranding eight men on base.
A little over ten years ago now, the Cleveland Indians had one of the more unusual starts to a home slate of games in the history of baseball.
The date was Friday, April 6, 2007, and the Indians were set to open Jacobs Field for play for the first time that season with a 4:05 PM start against the Seattle Mariners. Hopes were high in Cleveland that the Tribe would rebound from a disappointing 78-84 record in 2006, just one season after going 93-69 and falling games short of the playoffs courtesy of a late September collapse.
While the Cleveland Indians’ road trip got off to a great start with a three-game sweep in Texas against the Rangers, the club was tripped up hard in its return to Arizona when it was dealt a discouraging three-game sweep at the arms and bats of the Diamondbacks.
The Tribe will look to get itself righted again and put that bad series in the rear view when it hosts the Chicago White Sox for three straight at Progressive Field this week.
The Indians (3-3) started the season with some impressive late inning dramatics in the heart of Texas, but back in the desert, they were met by a white-hot Diamondbacks team that contained the Tribe offense while putting up buckets of their own runs. The Indians were outscored 21-7 in the three-game set and were not in many of the games late.
The Cleveland Indians will get their first look of many at the Chicago White Sox as their American League Central Division foe comes to Progressive Field to open the 2017 home slate for the Tribe.
It was a busy and somewhat curious offseason for the Sox, who seemed to have the Benjamin Button complex and got younger and younger with each passing day. After finishing fourth in the Central with a 78-84 record in 2016, general manager Rick Hahn opted to deal off some of the older producers on the roster to begin collecting some younger talent, almost appearing to concede their fight for the division before the season began while looking ahead to 2018 and beyond.
Captains baseball is back as the Class-A Lake County squad opened the 2017 season on the road against the Dayton Dragons. While Mother Nature prevailed in the suspended opener, the Captains would win the continuation of the game, 9-1, the following day, giving new manager Larry Day his first career managerial win.
Day returned to the Captains after spending last season working as the hitting coach at High-A Lynchburg for Mark Budzinski, another former Captains skipper. He took over for Tony Masolino, who moved into Budzinski’s vacant seat with the Hillcats when he was moved up to lead the Double-A Akron RubberDucks.
Day is quite familar with the Lake County organization already, having previously worked as the Captains’ hitting coach in 2015.
Arizona’s rookie manager Torey Lovullo could not have scripted a better beginning to his managerial career as his Diamondback improved to 6-1 to start the season with a 3-2 win on Sunday to complete the sweep over the reigning American League champion Cleveland Indians.
The former Indians player and minor league manager has his team rolling. His offense, while extremely slow to start, makes up for it plenty in the middle and late innings. The D’Backs outscored the Indians 21-7 in the three-game series and are the most productive offense in the game with 48 runs scored on the young season. Their pitching has gotten the job done as well, as combined with the run production, the Diamondbacks have the top run differential in baseball.
Arizona left-hander Patrick Corbin stepped up big for the Diamondbacks, who were going up against last year’s third place finisher in the AL Cy Young voting in Corey Kluber. The Indians got a quality start from their right-hander, but the D’Backs got six scoreless from their former All-Star starter.
A season ago, the Cleveland Indians made a habit of winning games late and in their last at bat. They had 11 walk-off victories. Wins of that variety can be both very stressful and very exciting for the fans. They can be galvanizing for a baseball team.
Winning in a late fashion can pump life into a ball club that a blowout win just can not. You do not see postgame Gatorade baths or pies in the face – though those are now banned – for players who hit a home run in the middle frames of a 9-2 victory, for example. However, hit an eighth- or ninth-inning bomb or get a big RBI in the final couple stanzas and the postgame celebration has some sizzle and entertainment.
In 2016, the Indians got to within one win of the World Series. They were known for being a tight-knit group that had each other’s backs. When the going got tough late, the Tribe really got going and was at its best. Late inning comeback wins seemed to forge a bond and a resiliency with the unit that nothing could break the squad.