After not seeing each other for the first time this year until the very final days of May, the Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox will meet up for the third time in the last seven series when the two clubs kick off a three-game series from Progressive Field on Monday night.
The Indians (37-33) will presumably be excited to face a different divisional foe this week, as they have had no answers for the Minnesota Twins this season, especially over their last two series against one another. The Tribe dropped two of three to the Twinkies over the weekend, avoiding the sweep with a strong 4-1 win on Sunday afternoon, as rookie right-hander Shane Bieber earned his first win with a tightrope act on the mound and his battery mate Yan Gomes drove in three with a bases loaded double in the third. The Indians come into the weekday series with a two and a half game lead over the Detroit Tigers for second place in the AL Central.
The heavily damaged outfield of the Indians has finally returned to full health, as Cleveland activated Tyler Naquin from the 10-day disabled list on Friday afternoon. In a corresponding move, the Indians placed first baseman Yonder Alonso on the Family Medical Emergency list.
The original plan for the Indians was to option outfielder Greg Allen to Triple-A Columbus, but his stay in Cleveland has been extended a few more days while the club waits for Alonso to rejoin the team.
Tyler Naquin has spent much of the last month and a half trying to prove that he can be a valuable contributor on the Cleveland Indians roster, whether it be in a starting role in right field for the time being or coming off of the bench. With an increased opportunity for playing time, he has come through with a big home run earlier this week and he extended his hitting streak to a season-high eight games on Friday with another key hit in the clutch, but the latter one will cost him some playing time.
Performing at a high level with a perfect opportunity to make a case to help out the Indians throughout the season, Naquin was placed on the 10-day disabled list on Saturday morning with a left hamstring strain. He suffered the injury running the bases after his big two-run double in the Indians’ six-run fourth inning of Friday night’s 10-9 loss to the Kansas City Royals.
A back-and-forth game between the Indians and Royals went in favor of Kansas City as the visiting club rallied for six unanswered runs to defeat the Tribe, 10-9, from Progressive Field on Friday night.
The Indians (18-19) took an early lead and reclaimed it with a six-run fourth inning, but Cleveland’s pitching could not slow down the Kansas City (13-25) offense, which chipped away with runs in three straight innings to take the lead for good in the seventh on a big home run off of Andrew Miller.
Plenty could be written about the unpredictable and unusual schedule that the Cleveland Indians have this season. With that said, the Indians return home after a short five-game road trip for three games with the Kansas City Royals before jetting right back out of town for a much longer road trip than the recently completed one.
The Indians (18-18) salvaged an ugly road trip by taking the finale in Milwaukee on Wednesday afternoon after losing a close contest on Tuesday night. Cleveland began its brief five-game roadie with three straight losses to the New York Yankees. It continued a down May for the club, as they have gone just 3-6 after ending April three games up in the win column. Despite the downward trend in play, they have remained atop the American League Central Division, holding a game and a half lead over Minnesota. The Indians took two of three from Kansas City in a previous series at Progressive Field this year in a low-scoring set that saw the two clubs combine to score just ten runs in the three contests.
The Cleveland Indians ended their four-game losing skid and salvaged the final game of their five-game road trip, using a pair of long balls and a complete game effort from Carlos Carrasco to defeat the Milwaukee Brewers, 6-2, on Wednesday afternoon.
Carrasco was the star for much of the day for the Tribe, striking out the Brewers at ease on the way to 14 total, one short of his career high. He earned his fifth win of the year and ended the Tribe’s losing streak at four with a complete game effort, allowing just two runs on five hits on the afternoon. He threw 117 pitches, making him a curious choice to bring back out in the latter innings. Given the bullpen’s woes, there may have been some hesitance on the part of the coaching staff, which instead opted to let Carrasco throw his second complete game of the year.
After seven innings of one-hit baseball combined between the Indians and Yankees, New York rallied for three in the eighth and four more in the ninth, riding a game-winning three-run walk-off home run by rookie Gleyber Torres to a 7-4 win over Cleveland on Sunday afternoon, completing a three-game sweep.
It was a wild and wacky finish to the Indians and Yankees series in New York on Sunday as both starting pitchers flirted with no-hit bids. The Indians would not get their first hit until the eighth inning, but tallied four runs in the frame to take the lead, only to see the scorching hot Yankees rally for three in the home half and four in the ninth to take home a shocking win and a series sweep in a rematch of last season’s American League Division Series.
The Cleveland Indians will open the interleague portion of their schedule this week as they play host to the Chicago Cubs for the first time since the 2016 World Series.
The Indians (12-8) will welcome the Cubs to Cleveland for the first time since a rain-afflicted Game 7 in the 2016 World Series. Both clubs followed their Fall Classic appearance with shorter-than-expected playoff trips last season, as the Indians were eliminated in the first round by the New York Yankees, while the Cubs were knocked out in five games in the National League Championship Series by the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Indians’ offense remains a source of concern, as the team has performed poorly with runners in scoring position and in general. But despite the inconsistent efforts from the bats, the pitching staff has been strong all around. The staff ranks first in the Majors in batting average against (.201) and WHIP (0.98) and second in ERA (2.57). The starting rotation is first with a 0.98 WHIP, second with a .203 BAA, and third with a 2.58 ERA, while the bullpen is first in WHIP (0.96), second in BAA (.197), and fourth in ERA (2.55).
The Indians could not protect an early 4-0 lead as the Toronto Blue Jays rallied with four runs in the fourth inning off of starter Mike Clevinger and tacked on four more runs late against the Cleveland bullpen to claim an 8-4 win in the series opener on Friday from Progressive Field.
The Cleveland Indians racked up a season-high ten hits and Carlos Carrasco allowed just one run on three hits in a complete game gem over the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday night, 5-1.
Carrasco finally looked to be locked in on the mound after claiming wins in a pair of rough outings to start his 2018 season. Backed by a rare offensive outburst from the starting nine, the Indians (7-5) won their fourth straight game and secured their 14th consecutive series win over an American League Central rival.
A streak of wildness from Seattle closer Edwin Diaz gave Cleveland a chance in the ninth inning, but the rally fell short for the Indians as they dropped a 2-1 decision to the Mariners in game one of the 2018 regular season.
Baseball is officially under way and fans at Safeco Field and around the country were treated to a well-pitched game between former Cy Young winners Corey Kluber and Felix Hernandez that was one of the lowest scoring games of the day. One first inning swing by the Mariners would turn out to be the difference, but the Indians fought to the final out in an attempt to claim an Opening Day win.
One of the biggest questions about the Cleveland Indians this offseason was whether or not the club would pick up the team option on left fielder Michael Brantley after another injury-shortened campaign.
While the answer to whether Brantley would be back with the club was answered when they picked up his $12 million option, the Indians will not get a full season’s return from that investment, at least in regards to Brantley’s on-the-field contributions to Cleveland’s efforts in 2018. Manager Terry Francona announced on Sunday that the two-time All-Star would start the season on the 10-day disabled list.