|Highest WPA||Lowest WPA|
|Aaron Laffey||.180||Ryan Garko||-.076|
|Kelly Shoppach||.117||Grady Sizemore||-.055|
On the day yet another key player was placed on the DL, what remained of the Indians pounded out 18 hits, blew out the Twins, and in the process kept themselves within reasonable distance of the division leading White Sox.
Aaron Laffey didn't have to do much since the game was essentially over by the 3rd inning, but he pitched well in spite of the large lead. In a year with a lot of bad surprises, the guy who Cliff Lee beat out in Spring Training is now ensconced in the rotation, and not because of the injuries. If both Fausto Carmona and Jake Westbrook were still healthy, Mark Shapiro would be working the phones now trying to get a bat for Paul Byrd.
Livan Hernandez, who the Indians last saw in the 1997 World Series, had no velocity and no control, and was pounded into submission quickly. Four singles and a Choo home run in the third inning gave the Indians five runs and a 6-0 lead. Hernandez stuck around for the forth, ostensibly to eat another inning or two. It didn't work, as Grady Sizemore lead off the inning with a home run, and the next two batters singled.
Of course, it wouldn't be a Twins-Indians game without someone getting thrown at. Edward Mujica hit Alexi Casilla to start the eighth, which was probably intentional, though no words were exchanged after the beaning. In the bottom of the inning, Dennys Reyes hit Andy Marte with his first offering - that was definitely intentional. Everyone stayed put, though Eric Wedge and Ron Gardenhire held a long-distance shouting match from the top steps of their respective dugouts.
What was said?
"I'm not going to comment on that," Wedge said.
Said Gardenhire: "I told him, 'See you in Minnesota.'"
Hey, if things go south, at least we have this to look forward to.