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Cleveland Indians cruise to seven-game lead in division after thumping Twins, 7-1

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One division foe down, three to go as the Indians journey to the playoffs.

Indians 7, Twins 1

Box Score

Indians improve to 83 - 59

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The Indians closed out its season series against the Twins with a win. Fans can take a deep breath, as the Indians finished with a 10-9 record against the Twins. It would have been frustrating to drop the season series against the worst team in the division, if for no other reason than I promised to eat a five-dollar bill if the Indians lost today.

Crisis averted.

Twins starter Jose Berrios had a very strange case of the yips today, throwing the ball away on pickoff attempts twice (although one of these literally went through the webbing of the first baseman's glove). Hopefully, it's just one little weird bump in his career rather than something that drags him down in his career. On the other hand, Jon Lester. Unfortunately for the Twins, Berrios struggled throwing to home as well. He lasted only 2.2 innings, throwing 65 pitches and issuing 4 walks in the process. He coughed up 5 runs, 3 of which were earned. Here are those three runs:

While the victory today for the Indians is a great result, they weren't particularly challenged. The Twins were responsible for four of them, and they seemed determined to collect every possible error as if they were Pokémon. Meanwhile, the Indians bunted twice in the second inning for no particular reason, and Roberto Perez hit a triple in the top of the seventh after Byron Buxton almost (but did not) make Catch of the Year.

A TRIPLE. ROBERTO PEREZ. His last triple came on May 22, 2015 against the Reds.

One thing the Indians can be completely pleased with without any sarcasm: Corey Kluber. After a week of games in which the Indians and their opponents seemed determined to use as many pitchers as humanly possible, Kluber stepped up and provided seven innings of excellent pitching. While he looked a bit wild in the bottom of the 7th, he'd also thrown more than 100 pitches at that point. Kluber totaled ten strikeouts with only four hits allowed today.

In addition to Kluber, the performance by the bottom of the Indians order must also be praised. I can't remember seeing a line like this clumped together anywhere in the Indians lineup:

HITTER AB R H RBI BB SO AVG OBP SLG
A Almonte RF 4 2 3 0 1 1 .283 .304 .434
T Naquin CF 3 1 2 1 2 1 .304 .375 .554
R Perez C 4 1 2 1 0 0 .171 .283 .282
M Martinez 2B 5 0 2 1 0 1 .256 .287 .333


Just fantastic. I would lean toward marking Martinez as a net negative today, given his awful bunting and baserunning, but two hits and an RBI from the last guy in the order is acceptable. Naquin stood out the most to me today. He reached base in all but one of his at-bats, and knocked Lonnie Chisenhall in with a single after a 12-pitch battle.

Coming up next, the Indians start a series against the White Sox in Chicago. If you're interested in coming out, some of us are trying to figure out which day is best for a Let's Go Tribe meetup. Since the Tigers lost and the Indians won today, they take a 7-game lead in the division into the series, and their magic number for the postseason sits at 14.

Things are looking pretty bright in Cleveland, no? Except, of course, for the Browns.

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