Cleveland’s Zach Plesac pitched well enough to win on Sunday afternoon, but so too did Chicago’s Lucas Giolito, as the White Sox starter moved to 8-1 on the season with seven and one-third dominant innings on the mound in a 2-0 six-hit shutout over the Indians.
Plesac earned himself another start with seven innings of one-run, four-hit baseball in his second Major League outing, but he was ousted by Giolito, who got one run of support early on the ninth home run of the season by Tim Anderson. The Indians had few opportunities to strike through against Giolito, who kept the bats befuddled with a devastating fastball/changeup mix that made some of the Cleveland hitters look foolish in a two and a half hour series finale from Guaranteed Rate Field.
The Indians and White Sox are now both 29-30 and tied for second place in the American League Central, light years away from the scorching hot Minnesota Twins, which held on for a 9-7 win in Tampa to maintain an 11.5 game lead in the division.
The Indians saved their best for last on Tuesday night, as Cleveland rallied for two runs in the eighth and five more in an improbable ninth to stun the Boston Red Sox in a 7-5 victory.
On a night with persistent rains and an early delay after steady precipitation in the first inning and a half, the Indians and Red Sox went five scoreless frames before Boston took what appeared to be a commanding 3-0 lead over Cleveland. The Indians cut the deficit to one and missed out on a huge opportunity for more in the eighth, only to see the bullpen give the runs right back. But in a fashion uncharacteristic of their performance this season, the Indians found some Fenway magic of their own in their final at bats, hitting a pair of clutch home runs before claiming the game for good.
Tampa Bay rocked three more home runs off of Cleveland’s Carlos Carrasco as the Rays rolled to a 6-2 win on Saturday afternoon.
Both clubs had to endure a nearly three-hour long rain delay prior to first pitch on Saturday, but the Rays bats came out ready to play ball while the Indians offense remained unproductive to follow a season-long trend. The Rays got stellar pitching from Charlie Morton, who limited the Indians to just one run on three hits with ten strikeouts over six innings in his longest start (in terms of pitches thrown) this season. Carrasco was locked in at times, but the Rays found him three times with the long ball to change the outcome of the game.
The Indians will need another starting pitcher next week.
Cleveland announced on Saturday morning that pitcher Adam Plutko and catcher Eric Haase had been optioned to Triple-A Columbus. The Tribe made a pair of moves with the vacated roster spots, recalling outfielder Greg Allen from Columbus while also purchasing the contract of left-handed reliever Josh Smith from their top farm affiliate.
Luplow rejoins the Indians after a little over two weeks back on the farm. He was off to a slow start for the Indians, hitting just .200 in his seven games for Cleveland with three singles, two walks, and eight strikeouts in 17 total plate appearances.
A season-high six-run fifth inning for Cleveland broke a 2-2 tie and gave Corey Kluber the run support that he needed on Saturday afternoon as the Indians defeated the Atlanta Braves by an 8-4 final in game one of the day’s doubleheader.
It was a rare sight to see at Progressive Field, as the Braves made just their second regular season trip to Cleveland. The two clubs, who have met twice in the World Series (1948, 1995), last played in Atlanta in 2016 and have not played a series in Ohio since 2007.
Kluber faced off with Atlanta’s ace, Julio Teheran, in the series opener on Saturday after Friday’s contest was postponed by rain. A pair of late runs off of Kluber spoiled his quality start bid, while Teheran was knocked out before the close of the fifth inning when the Indians used a massive two-out rally to take the lead for good.
The Toronto Blue Jays were just what the doctor ordered to cure the Cleveland Indians’ early season blues. Carlos Carrasco bounced back from a rough debut with 12 strikeouts in five innings of work and the offense provided a season-high seven runs in a 7-2 defeat of the Blue Jays on Saturday afternoon.
Carrasco handled most of the work himself, shutting down the Blue Jays until two runs in his final inning of work in the fifth. At that point, his teammates had paced him with four runs before tacking on three more in the next two innings.
The Indians flirted with history on Thursday night but fell just short as Trevor Bauer threw seven no-hit innings and the offense added some rare support, but Toronto ended Cleveland’s no-hit bid in the ninth inning as the Tribe defeated the visiting Blue Jays by a 4-1 final from Progressive Field.
Bauer’s brilliant start to the 2019 season continued as he has already made an early case for his name to be mentioned amongst the best in baseball this year. After allowing just a run on a hit with one walk and nine strikeouts in a no-decision on March 30 against the Minnesota Twins, he followed it up with a hitless outing in which the only blemish was his six walks that drove up his pitch count and prevented him from completing his attempt at the first Indians no-hitter since 1981 (a drought of nearly 38 years and the second-longest active to only the San Diego Padres, which have never recorded one).
The Cleveland bullpen allowed three runs after seven shutout innings of one-hit baseball from Mike Clevinger, but a similar disastrous effort from the Chicago White Sox allowed the Indians to rally with four runs in the bottom of the eighth for a 5-3 win in Monday’s Home Opener from Progressive Field.
Three different Tribe relievers combined for two extra base hits, a walk, a costly error, and three poorly timed runs in the top of the eighth as the dormant White Sox lineup woke up to claim a 3-1 lead. Chicago manager Rick Renteria responded with a trip to his own bullpen after seven one-run innings from Ivan Nova, but it proved to be costly.
Hanley Ramirez hit a monster home run, Trevor Bauer pitched seven innings of one-run, one-hit baseball, and Greg Allen hit the game-deciding pinch-hit sacrifice fly with one down in the ninth inning as the Cleveland Indians got in the win column with a 2-1 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Saturday.
Both offenses were silenced on a cold and windy day in Minnesota, as the logic of the Twins hosting a season opening series in their dome-less stadium in the Land of 10,000 Lakes was questioned once again with near record setting temperatures and wind gusts coming in from left field at more than 30 MPH. While most players were bundled up as those they were about to hit the ski slopes, Bauer took the mound in short sleeves and showed again why he is one of the top pitchers in baseball today.
On Thursday, the 2019 Major League Baseball season will formally kick off as all 30 teams take the field together. Join Did The Tribe Win Last Night as we continue our long countdown to Opening Day – BT
Countdown to Opening Day – 1 day
Barring an unexpected last minute change, Greg Allen will be with the Indians in the number 1 as one of a handful of outfielders on the 25-man roster to open the season on Thursday in Minnesota.
Entering his third year, the speedy outfielder (who switched last year from the number 53 to 1) has a chance to make his mark in an uncertain mix at his position. While his center field job was taken by Leonys Martin (picked up last July from Detroit), opportunities in left and right field were both available this offseason after significant departures from the roster at the positions, including regulars Michael Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall. The team had several candidates in camp to consider, but the versatile Allen was able to claim one of the spots on the club.