Contrary to popular belief, the Cleveland Indians cannot, in fact, win every game. They were bound to lose at some point between now and the end of the season because the odds of winning so many games in a row are incredibly low. We saw the Tribe defy those odds during their 22 game win streak, but there’s a reason that streaks of that magnitude don’t happen all the time. Tonight, the Indians ran into a locked-in pitcher and lost 3-1.
This loss is not on Trevor Bauer, as many folks on Twitter seem to think. Yes, Bauer lost last week in the game against the Royals that snapped the 22 game win streak, and now the last two Indians losses have come on nights when Bauer started. But Bauer’s line tonight is as follows: 7.0 IP, 1 R, 5 H, 3 BB, 6 K. That is a dominant line from a starter. Bauer struggled with command early and got into some hot water in the sixth with runners on first and third, but it wasn’t until Yonder Alonso’s single in the seventh that the Mariners scored and tied the game (more on that in a bit). Bauer was able to shake off the back to back hits to start the seventh to get Ben Gamel to pop out and Carlos Ruiz to ground into a double play, thus limiting the damage. If you want to point fingers, don’t point them at Bauer. He did his job.
In regards to not doing your job, the entirety of the Cleveland Indians’ offense (minus Giovanny Urshela). Starter Erasmo Ramirez was even more dominant than Trevor Bauer, going 8 innings of 1 run ball and only allowing 3 hits. One of those hits, however, was a home run by Giovanny “Monstro” Urshella. Only two more Cleveland hitters would reach base all night (Austin Jackson doubled in the first and Jason Kipnis singled in the second). After Urshella’s homer in the top of the third inning, the Indians sent 19 men to the plate and watched 19 men sit back down before Austin Jackson drew an ultimately futile walk in the top of the ninth. It’s illogical to pen this loss on Trevor Bauer, or even Cody Allen (who we’ll get to in a minute) for that matter, when the offense produced all of four base runners over nine innings.
Cody Allen came in for some needed work and promptly ended the game in the ninth with just six pitches. A lead off single by Robinson Cano set the stage for Nelson Cruz to smash his 36th home run and give the Mariners their 8th walk off win of the season. Allen made a pretty bad pitch to Cruz and it was punished:
Per Brooks Baseball, Nelson Cruz has a slugging percentage of somewhere between .755-.822 when the ball is in the general vicinity of where that blue #4 dot is. The ball was listed as a 95mph fastball, so I’m not sure if Cody was trying to challenge Cruz and just got beat or if he missed his spot entirely, but the intention is irrelevant when the result is a ball about 7 rows deep into the outfield seats.
With tonight’s loss and the Dodgers victory over the Giants, it’s less likely that the Indians will catch Los Doyers for the best record in baseball. But that’s fine, who wants to go into the playoffs as the favorite anyway? Tis a silly thing. Tomorrow Carlos Carrasco looks to start a new win streak against Andrew Moore. Hopefully the offense shakes this one off and comes back firing on all cylinders tomorrow.
Oh yeah, and after tonight, Jason Kipnis isn’t the outfielder I’m most worried about *stares intensely at Jay Bruce*.