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Indians 4, Reds 3: Michael Brantley home run leads Tribe to victory

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That'll work.

David Maxwell/Getty Images

Indians 4, Reds 3

Zach McAllister has pitched better for the Indians than anyone else this spring, earning himself a spot in the starting rotation and increasing the Tribe's chances of having one of the better rotations in the American League. McAllister allowed two runs (one earned) Thursday afternoon against Cincinnati, giving up 9 hits, but not walking anyone. He ends his Cactus League season with a 2.84 ERA. More importantly, given which stats have the most predictive value this time of year, McAllister had a sparkling 28:4 K:BB ratio in 25.1 innings of work. His velocity has been very good as well. Of course I want to see him have this kind of success in the regular season before writing any hosannas to his greatness, but it's been an encouraging last few weeks for Old Rough and Ready.

Austin Adams, who has been named as the last man on the now finalized 25-man roster for Opening Day, continued to look shaky, with a walk and a double allowed against the first two batters he faced brought in a run. His spring ERA is now 7.27, though he has an impressive 10:1 K:BB ratio and hasn't given up any home runs. Perhaps he's just been unlucky with batted balls. (Either way, I don't expect him to remain in the bullpen for most of the season.)

Most of the Tribe's ten hits today came via players who won't be in the starting lineup (or even on the roster) very often, but one Michael C. Brantley did collect a pair, including his first home run of the spring, on a fly ball he pulled over the fence in right. He hadn't hit any homers until today, but he is batting .366, so it's not as though he hasn't been very productive at the plate.

The Indians now have only two more spring training games, both of them against the Brewers. Saturday's Cactus League finale will be a road trip, but first up is the team's final game in Goodyear for the spring, starting at 4:05 ET on Friday. No starting pitcher has been announced. I thought Carlos Carrasco might go, to get some work in before his first regular season appearance next Wednesday, but I'm not sure if he's ready to return from the birth of his child yet.