Fausto Carmona and Cliff Lee both pitched well this weekend, but one got tagged with a loss.
Cliff Lee obviously forgot to bring his winning intangibles to the ballpark today, as the Indians got only 3 hits off Mike Maroth. Lee's probably pitching as well as anyone on the starting staff; he struck out 6 and allowed just 5 hits in his 7.1 innings of work. His only blemish was a Chris Shelton (he of the deific 1.667 OPS) home run.
What to make of the Indians pounding Jeremy Bonderman, a hard-throwing right-hander, and getting shut down by two finesse left-handers? Not much, yet. This early in the season, you try to stay away from snap judgments. It's probably not a good idea to switch Jhonny Peralta and Casey Blake in the lineup based on two weeks' worth of performance. But you should file this away for later in the season. The Indians have a lot of fastball hitters in their lineup, so facing two finessers in the first three games of the series is going to be a matchup advantage. But they beat Jarrod Washburn and Johan Santana in the last ten days, so perhaps it's more performance than history.
Fausto Carmona's debut on Saturday was more than you could have asked for. Carmona faced the Tigers' "B" lineup, as Magglio Ordonez, Ivan Rodriguez, and Placido Polanco were all sitting. And Detroit's aggresive hitters helped Carmona out a lot, as Fausto left the game in the 7th having thrown just 88 pitches. But his stuff definitely looked impressive, inducing plenty of weak grounders and pop ups with its biting action.