This past winter, the Cleveland Indians decided to move on from free agent and long-time player Carlos Santana. He was set to break the bank on a mega contract that Cleveland’s management did not think was worth shelling out to a first baseman who could put up decent power numbers, but has been very inconsistent over the course of his career.
Santana, 32 years old, inked a lucrative deal with the Philadelphia Phillies that guaranteed him three years and at least $60 million. It ended Santana’s eight-year (seven full seasons) run with the Tribe. His journey with Cleveland was a roller coaster ride, watching him go from catcher, to third base, to finally settling in as a first baseman.
It was also a roller coaster in the sense that he could not put back-to-back great seasons together. He followed a 27-homer 2011 campaign with seasons of 18 and 20 bombs. He mashed 27 again in 2014, but fell back to 19 again in 2015, and then hammered a career-high 34 jacks in Cleveland’s 2016 World Series season. He finished his Tribe tenure dropping back down to 23 taters last season, putting him all over the map. His .249 batting average did not scream franchise player either, so why pay Santana like a franchise player – especially in a smaller market like Cleveland.
Trevor Bauer provided six innings of shutout baseball and the offense erupted for a ten-spot in a 10-0 three-hit shutout of the Minnesota Twins on Monday night from Progressive Field.
Bauer entered the day just one strikeout short of matching his career best and five short of the 200-mark and he knocked out both accomplishments with ease in an eleven-strikeout performance as the Indians completed their 12th shutout of the year.
After a quick road trip through Detroit and Minneapolis, the Cleveland Indians return home this weekend for a three-game series with the Los Angeles Angels.
The Indians (59-48) finally figured out the Minnesota Twins over the weekend, taking each of the final two games of the series to pull a little closer on the season series against their toughest division rival to date. The Tribe moved to 9-6 since the break after their 4-2 trip and continued their better play on the road in July, winning eight of their last ten away from home. They own a ten-game lead in the American League Central Division over the Twins as the division may have conceded with the pile of trade deadline moves that came from within throughout July.
The Indians will wrap up their six-game road trip this week with a three-day stay at Minnesota’s Target Field against the hometown Twins.
The Indians (57-47) have had a tough time since the All-Star break, going 5-4. Four of those wins have come in their six road contests in the second half. Cleveland will wrap up another month with a winning record, bringing in a 13-10 mark in the month of July into the series with two games left to play. They will have to overcome a Minnesota team that has taken six of the first nine meetings between the clubs this season, the only club in the American League Central to give the Tribe fits. The Indians enter the day with a nine game lead in the division.
Cleveland’s Corey Kluber pitched solid, durable baseball into the eighth inning and the Indians offense provided three home runs in an 8-1 rout of the Detroit Tigers on Sunday afternoon to claim a series win.
It was a much needed performance from the Indians’ right-hander in the rubber match on Sunday as Kluber looked to bounce back from some rough outings while dealing with right knee issues. In his first start after the All-Star break, he allowed a season-high seven runs (just three of which were earned) in four innings, his second shortest effort of the year, while striking out just two in a contest for the second time this season. While the strikeouts were not a big part of his second outing of the second half on Sunday, he limited the foot traffic with just five hits allowed and one walk, exiting after 94 pitches well on the way to his 13th win of the year.
The Cleveland Indians used four home runs and five late inning runs to knock off the Detroit Tigers from Comerica Park on Friday night in an 8-3 final.
In a close pitching matchup between Carlos Carrasco and pesky Detroit right-hander Mike Fiers, it would be a battle of bullpens that proved to be the difference as the Indians broke open the game with a big inning against the Tigers’ lone All-Star representative, Joe Jimenez.
Trevor Bauer looked like the All-Star that he was just over a week ago as he limited Pittsburgh to just two hits over seven-plus shutout innings in a 4-0 Cleveland win on Wednesday afternoon.
Bauer got a little early help from the Tribe offense and was able to do something the previous two Indians starters had not been able to do by keeping the Pirates from scoring early and often. He minimized the base traffic, allowing just one hit over the first seven innings that he worked, and got big help from his bullpen late to secure the victory as the Indians moved to 55-46 on the year and got back into the win column after three straight losses.
Corey Kluber’s first start after an injection in his right knee did not go as planned as the Pittsburgh Pirates took advantage of several extra outs in the second inning to run up a big early lead and the third of three rain delays took care of the rest as the Cleveland Indians were blanked for the second straight day, 7-0, in six innings.
The Pirates rolled into Progressive Field on a nine-game winning streak and easily pushed it to a season-high ten straight as they took advantage of mechanical issues from Kluber and several defensive miscues that immediately led to runs in the second inning against the Tribe’s ace.
Game one of the Battle of Ohio went the way of the Reds on Monday night as Cincinnati held off a late Indians rally in a 7-5 win over Cleveland from Progressive Field.
The Reds got out to an early lead against Tribe starter Mike Clevinger, who managed to be both unhittable and hit hard at various points of the night. Cincinnati would tack on with a final scoring assault in the ninth, and it would prove to be the difference in the ball game after a late rally from the hometown club.
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 used a Major League season-high 13 extra base hits and eleven doubles and scored in each of the last five innings in a 15-3 rout of the Oakland Athletics on Sunday afternoon, avoiding a sweep at Oakland Coliseum.
The Indians narrowly missed matching the American League record for doubles in one game in a two-base onslaught against Oakland starter Frankie Montas and the A’s bullpen. The big scoring rally from the Tribe included eight runs in the eighth inning and hits from eight of the nine players in the starting lineup. The one player who did not record a hit, former A’s outfielder Rajai Davis, contributed a beautiful diving catch early and saw his late inning replacement, Tyler Naquin, record one of the team’s RBI hits from his spot in the lineup.
Only early rains could slow down Shane Bieber and the Cleveland Indians on Friday night, as they opened the final series of their homestand with a 10-0 shutout of the Detroit Tigers.
A delay of one hour and 41 minutes at the outset was about all that would stand in the way of the Indians winning their fifth straight game as they breezed to a big win over the second place Tigers. Bieber set new personal bests with seven innings of scoreless work and nine strikeouts as he became just the third Indians pitcher since 1908 (Herb Score, Luis Tiant) to open his career with six strikeouts or more in his first three starts.