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Game Forty-One: Indians 5, Reds 3

Box Score
Win Probability Added @ Fangraphs

Highest WPA:

Rafael Betancourt .156
Jhonny Peralta .145
Josh Barfield .089
Fultz/Shoppach (tied) .088

Lowest WPA

Paul Byrd -.079
Victor Martinez -.066
Grady Sizemore -.043

Well, it looks like neither Ryan nor I got to actually watch the game.  We could read the box and recap and just fake it, but instead, we're turning the commentary over to Andrew (afh4) ... because here at LGT, you, the readers, are king, unless you piss us off, of course.  Andrew?

By afh4
Posted on Mon May 21, 2007 at 05:18:32 PM EDT

In the ongoing Showdown for Ohio, the Cleveland Indians finished out the series.  As has been pointed out a number of times around here, the Indians have been incredibly good at winning at home this year (now 16-4) and at winning series (now 10-3-1).

Paul Byrd continued to look like a quality starter, turning in yet another quality start with 9 hits and 3 earned over 7 innings.  Shoppach caught, as he has for Byrd's last 6 starts; Shoppach is becoming Byrd's caddy and provided this quote:

"I feel like we've got a pretty good idea of what we're doing.  But shoot, all the credit goes to him. I'm just a ball return out there."

Byrd ran into a little bit of trouble in the second inning, giving up a leadoff homerun to He Whose Name Shall Not Be Spoken and then an RBI double to Scott "Pickin' Machine" Hatteberg.  The Indians battled back with a variety of runs in the third and fourth, bringing the score to 5-2 and chasing Harang after 5 innings.

There wasn't a lot of drama until the eigth inning when Byrd loaded them up with no outs and then handed it over to the bullpen.  Fultz coaxed a sac fly, Shoppach cut down Ryan Freel at third, and Betancourt got HWNSNBS swinging.  Shoppach tried to pull the "No, no I'm not the prettiest girl at the prom" routine:

"It was a dumb play.  I shouldn't have even thrown it.  Two runs come in if I don't make it.  Dangerous play by me."

Regardless of what he says, Kelly is the prettiest girl at the prom.  Plus, she has a cannon for an arm which is awesome for the afterparty.

Jhonny Peralta contributed with a couple of hits, including a homerun that ran his team leading total to 10.  He also ate Ken Griffey Jr.'s hamstring, state fair turkey leg style, as he rounded the bases.  Borowski tacked on a 1-2-3 ninth.

The game lacked strong narrative for a number of reasons:

  1. The Reds suck.
  2. Paul Byrd, as awesome as he's been this year, is not sizzling, especially when he's pitching well.
  3. Despite its name, the winner of the Showdown for Ohio doesn't win the state of Ohio.  They don't win anything.  C'mon, we can't get a Scarlet Carnation corsage or make the losers battle in a pit of Black Racer Snakes?