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Game 66: Indians 4, Pirates 3

Sorry for the lateness of the recap; the SBN server was down all night. It's still a little balky, so no Fangraph or photo of the game (though you can view the graph here).

The Indians just ended a series against the hottest team in baseball, so it was nice to have a series against the coldest club right after. The Pirates came into the contest losers of eleven in a row, and were owners of the worst record in the National League. Still, they were only two games worse than the Indians, so it looks like an exciting series with the Indians' "secondary" NL rivals.

Fausto Carmona pitched as well as he did in his last outing for six innings, but the inning after his offense broke a scoreless tie with four runs, he came out to the mound channeling his 2009 self. He struck out seven, allowing just one hit in six scoreless innings to start his outing, but he allowed the first four Pirates to reach in the seventh, the big blow coming from the bat of LGFT Ryan Church in the form of a bases-clearing double. Thankfully, Zombie Perez and Frank Herrmann extricated the Indians from the mess, and Chris Perez and Kerry Wood pitched scoreless innings to hold the lead.

The Indians are really going to be hurt by the National League rules on this trip; Travis Hafner will have to be held out of the lineup for the next three series, limited only to pinch-hitting duties because he can't play in the field. And, like any other AL club, will have to send to the plate pitchers who haven't hit all season. Of course, in the case of Fausto Carmona, I don't know if any amount of batting practice could fix his swing. Fausto did manage to put the ball in play, bouncing out to the pitcher in his first at-bat. But in his second and third at-bats his luck ran out. He struck out in the fifth with a runner on second, and couldn't put the ball down in the seventh when called on to bunt (he only got two opportunities to lay one down because he missed the first sign).