As much as I support our boys in red and blue, the last week has been rough.
Then yesterday happened. A little squirrel friend hopped onto the field and changed everything forever. For a brief moment, someone threw water on our faces to wake us up from the nightmare of being on the verge of getting swept by the Minnesota Twins.
Instantly dubbed the Rally Squirrel by play-by-play announcer Matt Underwood, he did not rally anything, unfortunately. Even the proven power of a rally animal cannot save the Cleveland Indians offense over the last week. Instead, the Indians completed the game and lost, 4-1. And with that, a week of pain ended.
Maybe this was a week-long performance piece by the Indians, to let us experience a fraction of the pain caused by childbirth leading into Mother’s Day. Well played, now please stop, I think I’ve given birth to triplets.
This all leads to only logical conclusion for the Player of the Week vote: Squirrel vs. The Field. Who is your player of the week? Five minutes of a squirrel interrupting another loss to the Twins, or the entire Cleveland Indians roster over the last week?
It’s a tougher decision than you may think.
From the moment the squirrel appeared in the sixth inning to Matt Underwood declaring “he is gone” as he scampered out the left-field gate was just a shade under four minutes. As also noted by Underwood, the crowd was the loudest it had been “in a while” watching the Rally Squirrel do its thing.
At the time, 22-year-old pitcher Jose Berrios was nine batters into the 13-straight that he retired in his first start of the season. The Indians did mange two base-runners post-Rally Squirrel — Lonnie Chisenhall was hit by a pitch and Michael Brantley singled in the ninth inning — but he didn’t help much.
Still, it was fun. And fun isn’t something we’ve felt a whole lot lately.
As a team, the Indians have the worst offense in the American League over the last week. Their .204/.209/.288 batting line has them at a league-worst 62 wRC+, and they have just one home run. The New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox have the next lowest home run totals at five apiece.
Pitching has been better, overall, with the staff carrying a 2.91 ERA, third-lowest in the AL. But when you isolate the starters, that ERA balloons to 3.48 with 4.01 walks per nine innings, third-worst in the AL.
If this was another straight-faced vote, Yan Gomes and Carlos Santana would run away with all of them. The former hit .333/.412/.667 over the last week, while the latter hit .286/.423/.524 with an incredible 19.2 percent walk rate. Gomes also had the team’s only home run of the week.
Who should be the Indians Player of the Week?
This poll is closed
The entire Indians roster