With their backs against the wall this week, the Indians brought little to the plate and little relief. Friday’s 8-2 loss to the Washington Nationals, coupled with a 6-2 win by Tampa Bay in Toronto, officially eliminated Cleveland from the 2019 postseason.
The end results mirrored those of recent days after the Indians dropped two of three to the Chicago White Sox earlier in the week in must-win situations. The Tribe was in the game briefly, but a disastrous five-run sixth inning by the Cleveland bullpen ended the team’s playoff hopes with one messy frame.
The Indians gave up a 4-1 lead in the middle innings as the Philadelphia Phillies used eight unanswered runs to defeat Cleveland by a 9-4 count on Saturday night.
With every win valuable down the stretch for the playoff contending Tribe, it was a tough blow to the team’s chances of October baseball on Saturday night. An early three-run lead went for naught as the pitching staff could not protect the advantage while the offense disappeared after putting up a four-spot in the first two frames. A loss by the Minnesota Twins kept the Indians (91-64) within four games in the American League Central, but a two-run home run in extras by the Tampa Bay Rays gave them a walk-off win over Boston and a full game lead over the Indians for the second AL Wild Card spot.
Zach Plesac quieted any concerns that he was running out of gas late in the season as he fired a complete game four-hit shutout in an 8-0 win against the Los Angeles Angels on Tuesday night.
The Indians supplied Plesac with a half dozen runs of support over the first three innings, but the rookie right-hander needed just one of those runs to shut down the Angels in the middle game of three for the Indians in Anaheim. Making his 19th career start, Plesac went the distance to move the Indians to 85-61 on the year, five games in back of the Minnesota Twins in the American League Central.
Sometimes, the worst thing for a team is to face a pitcher after an abysmal start. That was the case for the Cleveland Indians on Thursday afternoon as Chicago’s Reynaldo Lopez bounced back from a career-worst performance with a complete game one-hitter in a 7-1 White Sox win over the Tribe.
After holding on by the skin of their teeth on Wednesday, momentum failed to carry over for the Indians on Thursday as Lopez shut down the Tribe for nine innings to win his ninth game of the season. Coming off of a two-thirds of an inning performance against the Atlanta Braves in his last start on August 31, Lopez looked like a completely different pitcher as he allowed just one run on one hit with three walks and eleven strikeouts while facing just four batters over the minimum. His offense gave him a pair of early runs in the second, then broke the game open for good in a three-run sixth against Cleveland starter Zach Plesac.
While things have not been going so great for All-Star closer Brad Hand the last couple of days, the same cannot be said about his Midsummer Classic and Cleveland teammate Carlos Santana, as the Indians first baseman just cleared the 19-foot wall in left-center field to start the bottom of the ninth to give the Tribe a 6-5 walk-off win over the Boston Red Sox.
The Indians held a 5-1 lead after three innings against Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez, but Boston chipped into that advantage with a pair of runs in the fourth, one in the seventh, and a painful fifth run in the top of the ninth as Hand blew a save for the second straight day. As was the case on Sunday afternoon in the Indians’ 7-3 win over the Minnesota Twins, Santana picked up his AL and Indians roster member by hitting a timely home run as Cleveland celebrated his milestone blast with a well-deserved on-field gathering at home plate.
It was a game dominated by pitching as the Indians and Rangers opened the day’s doubleheader with a pitchers’ duel between 23-year-old Jurado and the 24-year-old Zach Plesac. The two starters went toe to toe for six innings before the Indians finally struck through against the Rangers’ second-year right-hander.
Tuesday’s game between the visiting Texas Rangers and the host Cleveland Indians was rained out from Progressive Field with inclement weather pending in the northeast Ohio area. The game will be played on Wednesday as part of a traditional doubleheader.
The pitching probables for the night, Cleveland’s Zach Plesac (6-3, 3.41 ERA) and Texas’ Ariel Jurado (6-6, 4.92), were pushed back to start the opener of Wednesday’s double dip, still scheduled for 1:10 PM ET. The second game will start shortly after the completion of game one and will see a bullpen game from the Tribe while the Rangers will call on right-hander Lance Lynn (14-6, 3.71).
Rookie Zach Plesac allowed just one unearned run over seven innings of work and Jose Ramirez went deep for the second game in a row as the Cleveland Indians rolled to an 8-3 win over the Kansas City Royals on Friday.
The Indians got to Jakob Junis, one start after he limited Cleveland to just two hits over six scoreless innings. The Tribe took a two-run lead in the third and piled on six runs over the final four innings to claim a second straight victory over the Royals while guaranteeing a winning road trip through Toronto and Kansas City.
A six-run outburst by the Indians in the seventh inning proved to be enough as Cleveland completed a three-game sweep over the Kansas City Royals in an 8-4 final on Thursday.
The Indians (48-38) moved to a season-high ten games above even and cut their deficit in the American League Central Division down to six games, coupled with a Minnesota loss in Oakland for the second time in three days. The Indians’ bullpen picked up for rookie righty Zach Plesac when he was unable to make it through the third inning and stopped the bleeding, holding the Royals to just a run on four hits over the final six and one-third innings.
The final score in the headline is no typo. For the second straight day, the Baltimore Orioles, Major League Baseball’s worst team thus far in 2019, shut out the Cleveland Indians by an identical 13-0 final.
Zach Plesac was roughed up for seven runs, including six in the fourth inning before being chased. The Indians offense was silenced by right-hander Andrew Cashner, who was initially scratched from the day’s start before a rain delay prior to first pitch changed that plan. He allowed just three hits over seven scoreless as the Orioles claimed a series win and back-to-back victories for the first time since early May.
Zach Plesac was good again for the Tribe and his offense provided him with a five-run second inning as the Indians cruised to a Sunday sweep of the Detroit Tigers in an 8-3 victory from downtown Cleveland.
Plesac continued an impressive start to his Major League career by handling the Tigers with ease after a slightly shaky opening to the day. He outdueled Daniel Norris, who faced all nine Indians hitters in the second in what proved to be the difference in the ball game.
Zach Plesac took a no-hitter into the fifth and allowed just two knocks on the night, while his teammates backed his strong start with four home runs in a 10-3 victory over the Texas Rangers from Globe Life Park on Tuesday.
The Tribe’s rookie right-hander pitched into the eighth inning for the first time in his big league career and bounced back well after a rough start against the Cincinnati Reds his last time out. He gave up just a run on two hits and departed in the eighth, while the bullpen handled the rest in a big offense performance from the Indians that included a rare feat not accomplished by the club in nearly 15 years. The ten-run outburst by the offense came on a night where both Francisco Lindor and Carlos Santana were held hitless.