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Sunday News and Notes: Dominant starting pitching once again drives Tribe victory

Yesterday it was Danny Salazar who pitched the Indians to victory.

Danny Salazar continued a stretch of great pitching by the Cleveland rotation.
Danny Salazar continued a stretch of great pitching by the Cleveland rotation.
Jason Miller/Getty Images

Yesterday's Game

Cleveland Indians finally break through with big hit to back Danny Salazar, beat Baltimore, 2-1 |

Salazar's gem leads Tribe to even series |

Danny Salazar strikes out 10 as Indians beat Orioles 2-1 - Let's Go Tribe

These low-scoring games have become a habit of late. The offense gets a bunch of hits but can't push many runs across, but the starting pitcher picks up the slack and the bullpen hold on to get the win. Over the course the season this trend can't last; the offense has to pick it up. But even so, it has been quite a run for the rotation since the beginning of May.

Indians News

Salazar contributes to core four of rotation |

With Salazar's emergence, the Indians now have four starting pitchers that (1) have the potential to go at least 7 innings every time out and (2) strike out at least a batter per inning. Jordan Bastian calls this quartet (Kluber, Carrasco, Bauer, Salazar) a "core four," a name that echoes another quartet of Tribe starters over 70 years ago. Nicknamed the "Big Four," the Indians rotation from 1949-1954, the quartet of Early Wynn, Bob Lemon, Mike Garcia, and Bob Feller dominated the American League. With free agency, keeping a rotation together that long is a very difficult thing to do in today's game, but if the current group stays healthy, it would be possible for them to stay together for another four years.

Jose Ramirez's confident strut and Francisco Lindor's recent stretch: Zack Meisel's musings |

The Francisco Lindor Watch continues, especially as Jose Ramirez continues to struggle at the plate. Terry Francona has continued to say that Lindor isn't ready, but if the team gets back into contention it's going to be very difficult to keep a defender like Lindor in the minors, even if he doesn't hit right away.

MLB News

Police say fan injured at Fenway is 'recovering' |

A fan who was struck in the head by a splintered bat Friday night is still at a Boston hospital.

Stanton, Trout and others who hit baseballs hard. | : AJ Cassavell Article

With Statcast now implemented around MLB, we can know the "exit velocity" of base hits. Here are the hardest-hit balls so far this season. It should come as no surprise that a Giancarlo Stanton hit leads the list (at 120.3(!) MPH)

Latest 25-man/40-man rosters

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June 7 2015

The rotation is responsible for over one-third of the team's total WAR, a percentage you don't usually see. But because the starters are consistently pitching well and going deep into games, they are right up there with the offense, which always has at least 8 innings of opportunities a night.

It can't be coincidence that the bullpen has gotten better as the starting pitching has gone deeper into games. Bryan Shaw has done well pitching multiple games in a row, but getting regular days off has to be good for him.  And with no weak spots now, Terry Francona shouldn't have to lean on any individual pitcher. Ryan Webb has been outstanding since he was brought up, and Austin Adams has looked good in his rare appearances.