The Indians didn't look good in their first six innings after the All-Star break, falling behind 3-0 while managing next to no offense. Then something clicked in the top of the 7th, and by "clicked," I mean the Tribe scored seven runs. They tacked on another pair in the 9th to win 9-3. The hero of the night was Jason Kipnis. On Wednesday I wondered if we should be worried about him. By going deep twice Friday night, it would seem Kipnis' answer to that question is "No."
Kansas City and Seattle both lost last night, when means the Indians are tied for 2nd in the Central, 6.5 games back of Detroit, and are in a four-way tie for 6th in the AL, 2.5 games behind Seattle for the second Wild Card spot.
Other Tribe items
Hoynes caught up with Corey Kluber, who spent the All-Star break where cyborgs always go to recover, at a lake in New Hampshire. Of the ten-game road trip the Indians begin the second half with, Kluber says, "We play three divisional opponents, two of them are ahead of us. This is a great chance to gain some ground."
Marla Ridenour of Ohio.com caught up with Michael Brantley to talk about his first All-Star experience: "Something I'll never forget."
Bastian reports that the Indians went $120,000 over slot (which means they'll pay an extra $90,000 as a penalty) and signed 30 of their 42 draft picks, including each of their top 15 selections and 25 of their first 26. That's a nice group of talent to add to the system.
Dave Cameron concludes this year's trade value countdown at FanGraphs with the top ten. (You may or may not recall that the Indians had three contracts further down on the list, which is nice.) In the end, baseball's best player tops the list, because he's so good and still so young. The #2 and #3 contracts are awfully good too though.
MLB has hired the other Billy Bean (no E at the end) as its first "Ambassador for Inclusion." Bean (and presumably, some sort of department) will work to ensure that MLB and MiLB teams (both the locker rooms and team offices) are equitable and inclusive work environments when it comes to race, gender, and sexual orientation. It remains to be seen whether this is mostly just a public relations ploy, or if real work will be done. Hopefully it's the latter.
Please tell me you remember Tom Emanski, whose baseball instructional videos were promoted in TV spot that aired seemingly every hour on ESPN from the time I was in high school until well into my 20s. You have to, have to, have to read this piece by Eric Malinowski on Emanski. Seriously, go and read it.