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1995 Cleveland Indians: Week 2; First Base Splits

A non-descript start had the Tribe at 2-2 after their first series of the strike shortened season. Would week two be the start of the domination?

Paul Sorrento, an unheralded part of the 1995 behemoth
Paul Sorrento, an unheralded part of the 1995 behemoth
Stephen Dunn/ALLSPORT

This week in 1995, the Indians concluded their first road trip with three games in Detroit and then headed home for the home opening series against the Twins.

May 2-4, 1995

May 2: Indians 11, Tigers 1

May 3: Indians 14, Tigers 7

May 4: Indians 3, Tigers 4

With a day off after the Texas series, the Indians landed in Detroit and had Dennis Martinez make his second start. He was superb, giving up just one run and seven hits in seven innings. In the meantime, the Tribe scored four in the first off Sean Bergman with Jim Thome having the bog shot, a three run bomb to deep center. Paul Sorrento connected on a three run shot in the seventh, his third on the season with Carlos Baerga adding his second in the eighth and Manny Ramirez a solo shot in the sixth.

Mark Clark was not nearly as sharp as Martinez, but he was the beneficiary of another hot day at the office for the offense. They battered the first three Tiger pitchers for all fourteen runs and sixteen of the eighteen hits. Sorrento continued his scintillating start, his fourth homer and two doubles. Manny hit his third and Eddie Murray connected on his third.

The Indians could not pull off the sweep however, as Orel Hershiser lost to David Wells. The Tigers scored one in the second on a Kirk Gibson solo shot and two in the third on  a Bobby Higginson homer. The Tigers tacked one more on off Hershiser in the seventh. The offense made a game of it in the eighth, scoring three, but they left the bases loaded and lost.

May 5-5, 1995

May 5: Twins 1, Indians 5

May 6: Twins 5, Indians 2

May 7: Twins 9, Indians 10, 17 innings

In the home opener, Charles Nagy faced Scott Erickson and pitched seven great innings, one run, four hits and two walks. Julian Tavarez and Jose Mesa wrapped it up, with Mesa notching his first save. The offense finally went homerless, but did have five doubles out of the nine hits.

The offense really didn't solve Brad Radke, plating just two on eight hits, and just one extra base hit, an Omar Vizquel double. The Twins chased Bud Black in the third, scoring five. Chad Ogea pitched excellent in relief though, 4.1 innings of scoreless ball.

If any of you were lucky to attend the Sunday game, you were in for a treat. It was truly a back and forth affair. Murray opened with an RBOI single in the first. But the Twins took the lead with single runs in the second and third. The Tribe took a big lead in the third, 6-2, mainly on a three run bomb by Murray. The Twins got one back in the fourth and then it went quiet for a bit. The Indians plated two more in the sixth. But Jason Grimsley and Julian Tavarez couldn't hold the five run lead. A Marty Cordova solo shot off Eric Plunk in the eighth gave the Twins the lead, but Murray returned the favor in the bottom half. And then the bullpens took over, keeping it scoreless until the seventeenth, when Kenny Lofton drove in Manny on a single. The game should have ended much, much earlier as Cleveland left 23 men on base out of their 26 hits.

First Base Splits

G

PA

R

RBI

SB

BA

OPS

BAbip

Paul Sorrento

89

345

49

76

1

243

886

222

Herbert Perry

43

164

21

18

1

322

868

364

Eddie Murray

18

77

7

7

0

219

658

218

Alvaro Espinosa

2

3

0

1

0

333

667

500

Total


589

77

102

2

262

848

266

League Average

625

87

98

3

293

883

306

Hardly anyone remembers how important Sorrento was to this squad's dominance in 1995. He was usually the number eight hitter, but man what superb numbers he had. Even though hitting was supercharged in the 90s, an 886 OPS is still great. Perry was just 25 and looked like he might have a future. Murray did not fare as well when he played the field, although he did hit 4 home runs.

Summary

The offense kept on rolling, breaking double digits half of the week, and the pitching actually fared well except for two starts. And even in one of the bad games, the bullpen was pretty fantastic though the extras. The Indians hadn't reached first yet, but the signs were there that the offense was going to be spectacular. Next week: the Royals conclude this home stand and then they head to Baltimore.

Standings

W

L

Pct

GB

RS

RA

Pythag

Milwaukee Brewers

8

3

727

-

69

43

704

Cleveland Indians

6

4

600

1.5

77

55

649

Kansas City Royals

6

4

600

1.5

51

44

567

Minnesota Twins

4

7

364

4.0

57

77

366

Chicago White Sox

2

8

200

5.5

56

81

337