The Cleveland Indians kick off a six-game road trip with a return to Chicago for a three-game weekend set with the White Sox.
The Tribe (64-50) moved to a season-high 14 games over the .500 mark by winning three of four from the Minnesota Twins during the week. It brought their record against the division to 35-16 on the season (with an 8-8 mark against the Twins with three left to play). Cleveland comes into the weekend with an eleven-game lead in the AL Central over Minnesota and a 23-game advantage over Chicago.
If you are feeling a little bit of déjà vu, that is to be expected with the way the 2018 Major League Baseball schedule has worked itself out. For the second straight week, the Indians and Twins will meet on the diamond, with Cleveland playing the host to the visiting Minnesota club.
Cleveland (61-49) will look to continue its better play of late, winning back-to-back series over the Twins and the Los Angeles Angels. They dropped a sloppy 7-4 decision on Friday, but rebounded with a strong 3-0 shutout on Saturday and held on for a 4-3 win on Sunday in the season finale with the Halos. The Indians moved their season record against the Twins to 5-7 with their performance last week against their division rival. They will be looking to prevent Minnesota from locking up the season series between the two clubs.
It was a new month, but the same old results for Indians starter Carlos Carrasco on Wednesday afternoon as he won his fifth straight game with a quality seven and one-third innings of work in Cleveland’s 2-0 shutout of the …
Mitch Garver, who entered the game 1-for-16 against the Indians this season, won the game for the Twins on Monday night with a deep drive to the gap in left-center in the bottom of the ninth to give Minnesota a 5-4 win over Cleveland.
The second-year backstop with 91 games of experience under his belt was riding a hot stretch at the plate, coming into the game with good numbers over the last week, hitting .409 with three doubles, a homer, and six runs batted in. He would tally two more hits on Monday, but it was the last one that made the biggest difference.
It has been quite the week for Yan Gomes.
Last Saturday, the Cleveland Indians catcher learned he would be playing in his first All-Star Game. On Tuesday, the veteran backstop spent four innings catching some of the American League’s best pitchers and got to bat three times against some of the best that the National League has to offer. On Thursday, the Tribe traded away top prospect Francisco Mejia for much-needed relief pitching in the form of All-Star closer Brad Hand and rookie reliever Adam Cimber.
It was a vote of confidence in Gomes. His All-Star campaign was not an aberration and that he would be blocking Mejia’s path to the big leagues for a few more seasons, making the young switch-hitter an expendable piece for the trade with the San Diego Padres.
While things might not have gone according to plan for the Cleveland Indians in the first half, individual performances on the team have certainly merited the team’s six All-Star representatives for Tuesday night’s 89th Major League Baseball All-Star Game from Nationals Park in Washington, D.C. Regardless of the team’s overall record of 52-43, the Indians still sit atop the American League Central Division at the break with a seven and a half game lead over the Minnesota Twins, the largest lead of any of the six divisional leaders.
Deserving picks came from spots all across the 25-man roster, as a pair of starting pitchers, two infielders, an outfielder, and the squad’s resurgent backstop all made the trip to the nation’s capital for the annual exhibition, giving the Tribe its largest collection of All-Stars in nearly 20 years (matching the team’s six players on the American League roster in 1999). Their six All-Stars this season are also the most in the Majors, tied with the defending World Series champion Houston Astros.
Indians catcher Yan Gomes had put up numbers deserving of an All-Star trip this season at the position, but was pinched out of consideration as Tampa Bay’s Wilson Ramos was named the American League starter through the voting process and Kansas City’s Salvador Perez earned a spot on the roster as the sole representative of the Royals.
That all changed late Saturday night, as Ramos pulled out of Tuesday’s All-Star game with a hamstring strain that will send him to the disabled list. Gomes was named his replacement on the American League roster.
After fighting back to a 4-4 tie in the bottom of the sixth with a two-run infield single, the Cleveland Indians’ defense melted down on the first pitch of the seventh as a “Little League home run” would be the difference in a 5-4 loss to the New York Yankees on Saturday night.
The Yankees’ Austin Romine needed just pitch to cause havoc in the seventh as the Indians worked their back from a 3-0 first inning hole to make it a ball game with a little assistance from New York third baseman Miguel Andujar in the sixth inning. With the crowd re-energized after an unlikely scoring play for Cleveland, it would take just one pitch to knock the winds right out of the sails of the Tribe faithful.
The Cleveland Indians got out to a big early lead and had to hold on for dear life late as they evened up their series with the New York Yankees with a 6-5 win on Friday night.
Shane Bieber got back into the win column with a strong effort against the Yankees. He survived a rough fifth inning to keep the Indians on top, and they needed a tight-rope act from Cody Allen in the final frame to come away with the victory.
It was a start that Bieber will be able to learn and grow from as he faced the Royals for the first time in his career. He gave up a pair of runs in the first and two more in the second, but survived to give the Indians six innings on the mound while preventing any further damage.
The Cleveland Indians make their first trip of the year and their second trip to Missouri as they wrap up their road trip with a three-game series in Kansas City Royals.
The Indians (45-37) have had a tough start to their road trip, going 2-4 with an offense that was missing in action until the series finale in Oakland on Sunday, when the team used 13 extra base hits (including 11 doubles) to trounce the A’s by a 15-3 final. Cleveland is 25-13 against the AL Central this season, including a 4-2 mark against the Royals earlier this season in a pair of series at Progressive Field. The Tribe comes into the series with a nine-game lead in the division, the biggest advantage by any division leader in baseball.
The Oakland Athletics remained hot, winning their eleventh game in their last 13 contests with a 3-1 win over the Cleveland Indians on Friday night.
In a pitching matchup that favored the Indians, the Tribe offense was stymied by Oakland starter Paul Blackburn and the A’s bullpen. Trevor Bauer limited the A’s to just two runs over six and two-thirds innings, but the bats struggled to get going as the Tribe dropped their third game in the last four.