Wednesday night the Indians played their final home game of the 2013 regular season, beating the White Sox. They beat the White Sox the night before too. Prior to that, the Tribe swept three consecutive 4-game series from Chicago, and if you can do a little 4th grade math, you'll find that works out to 14 straight wins for the Indians against the Pale Hose. That winning streak helped Cleveland to a 17-2 record against the White Sox this season. Yesterday I wrote about that being one of the most dominant single-season performances against any opponent in franchise history.Today I want to see how that 14-game winning streak stacks up historically.
Longest single-opponent winning streaks in Indians history:
|Rank||Opponent||Wins||First Win||Last Win|
|1||Baltimore Orioles||17||May 21, 1954||September 6, 1954|
|2||Philadelphia Athletics||15||July 6, 1943||May 21, 1944|
|t3||Kansas City Athletics||14||April 24, 1960||September 16, 1960|
|t3||Chicago White Sox||14||June 28, 2013||September 25, 2013 (still active)|
|t5||New York Highlanders (Yankees)||13||July 13, 1908||September 23, 1908|
|t5||Baltimore Orioles||13||May 15, 1955||July 30, 1955|
|t5||Oakland Athletics||13||May 27, 1994||July 23, 1995|
|t5||Detroit Tigers||13||May 14, 1996||May 3, 1997|
|t9||Detroit Tigers||12||October 1, 1950||July 6, 1951|
|t9||Philadelphia Athletics||12||June 7, 1951||August 28, 1951|
|t9||Washington Senators (Twins)||12||July 24, 1956||May 18, 1957|
Hooray for long winning streaks against the Athletics in three different time zones!
Until 1954, the Baltimore Orioles were the St. Louis Browns, but in their final seven seasons in St. Louis, they'd averaged only 57 wins, making them the worst team in baseball in that era. Things didn't go any better their first two years after the move either. They didn't have a winning record against any of their opponents in 1954, but the Indians beat up on them the worst (of course, the Indians beat up on everyone that year... except the Giants /sad trombone). Tribe left fielder Al Smith had a line of .367/.506/.500 against Baltimore that year, scoring 19 runs. Center fielder Larry Doby drove in 22 runs in 22 games against the O's. It was the pitching that truly dominated though. The Indians staff had a combined ERA of 1.81 in 22 games against Baltimore in 1954, holding the Orioles to a .221/.276/.295 line.
Adjusting for era, this season's pitching against the White Sox wasn't too far off. Tribe pitchers had a combined ERA of 2.74 against Chicago in 2013, allowing a batting line of .242/.298/.350, with 8 strikeouts per 9 innings. Justin Mastersongave up just 3 runs in 32.2 innings against the White Sox this year, giving him an ERA of 0.83. The Indians also clubbed 25 home runs in their 19 games against the Pale Hose this season, with a collective OPS of .820, averaging 6.21 runs per game. Nick Swisher hit 6 of those home runs and reached base 36 times. Ryan Raburn had a line of .348/.415/.717 in 15 games, with 9 extra-base hits and 18 RBI.
Just for fun (whereas the rest of this was serious business), here is the Indians longest winning streak against each of the other American League teams:
|White Sox||14||2013 (active)|
It's likely to be a while before we see the Indians play as well against any one team as they have against the White Sox, but the winning streak is still going. This streak is already tied for the third-longest in franchise history, and the longest since expansion began in 1961. If they find a way to win their first four games against Chicago in 2014, it'll become the longest winning streak against any opponent in franchise history.
Keep it going, fellas, keep it going.