Indians improve to 93-67
In the grand scheme of things, this game wasn't all that exciting. Sure, Edison Volquez hit Jose Ramirez early in the game that led some folks to believe that there would be a benches clearing brawl at some point, but other than that, things weren't too stressful for the Cleveland Indians as they nabbed their 93rd win of the season.
Trevor Bauer has been a bit of an enigma this season. In one game, he'll look like the second coming of Cy Young and will baffle entire lineups through a ton of innings. In other games (hell, sometimes in the same game), he looks like Joe Blanton. Today, while not quite getting Cy Bauer, we thankfully avoided Trevor Blanton. Bauer had his arsenal of pitches working incredibly well throughout six innings of work. Of specific note was his two seam fastball, which had a good amount of horizontal movement that befuddled many hitters on the afternoon. His final line is exactly what the Tribe will need from Bauer in the coming weeks: 6.0 innings, 3 ER, 2 BB, and 9 K. Half of the Big 4 did not appear in today's game, but if you can get through the sixth inning with Otero, Shaw, Miller, and Allen ready to go, you can win a lot of baseball games. Bauer ran into a bit of trouble in the sixth when he gave up back to back doubles to Kendrys Morales and Paulo Orlando. Tito, wanting to see Bauer work through the jam, let his young star continue to finish out the inning by striking out Alex Gordon, Daniel Nava, and inducing a weak pop-out by Cheslor Cuthbert (that Kip, admittedly, almost dropped). Jeff Manship set up a bit of a pickle for Mike Clevinger to work out of, but the young starter-reliever came in and shut the door on the Royals to end the threat.
What shouldn't be overlooked is the Tribe offense, which capitalized on the control issues that plagued the Royals pitchers all day to score enough runs to put the game away after seven and a half innings. Standouts were Carlos Santana, who continues to be engulfed in flames and doubled and tripled again (the last Indians player to do so was Odell Hale in 1936. Thanks for the tidbit, Jason!), and Francisco Lindor who walked twice and knocked in a couple of runs. Lindor, prior to yesterday's game, had been mired in a pretty bad slump that he seems to be breaking out of in a big way. Getting Lindor back to his world-breaking ways would be ideal for the postseason run.
Oh, and Yan Gomes got a chance to catch again in the final innings of the game.
With a win tomorrow, the Royals will end their season with a record of 81-81. It sure would be nice to prevent the Royals from earning their fourth straight winning season. All games tomorrow start at 3:15 PM EST, and Josh Tomlin will get the start against Ian Kennedy for what could be the last game of the regular season. But in all likelihood, the Indians will makeup the rained out game with Detroit on Monday.