The Indians went 0-11 with runners in scoring position and the bullpen allowed another walk-off win.
It’s not any fun to lose. It is negative fun to lose on a walk-off.
Now that the NYTimes worthy lead is out of the way we can just say it: the Indians lost to the Minnesota Twins 5-4 on a Mitch Garver double. At this point I think that the Indians could put together their century team and the current Twins would sweep them in a 7-game series.
Jose Ramirez hit some killer homers, though
This is true.
In the first inning, Ervin Santana nearly let Jose Ramirez double down the right field line, but it landed just foul. Because Ramirez is having the season that he’s having, he homered a couple of pitches later on a high fastball. It was not cheap.
Later, Ervin Santana tried to throw a changeup inside to Ramirez. Maybe, Ervin thought, he’s waiting on the fastball. Maybe he’ll just pull it foul if he even makes contact at all. Maybe I can strike him out!
Nah. This one, too, sailed far over the right field wall. That hit in particular is a great illustration of why Ramirez hits so many home runs. He waited on the pitch, then pulled his hands through to both lift and pull the ball. It went 375, so it wasn’t crushed, but because he pulled it it left the park.
Eager to join the party, Yan Gomes bombed a home run to the second deck of left center in the 5th.
Shane Bieber looked fine
He also continues to have absolutely terrible luck with BABIP and errors. Consider the 2nd inning of today’s game. Kipnis committed an error, and then in the next at-bat Bieber pushed Max Kepler to two strikes. He then hooked a curve on the outer third below the strike zone, but Kepler golfed it for a single to advance the runner to third. That ran later scored on a sacrifice fly. With Kepler still on first, Miguel Sanó crushed a double to the gap in left. The ball should have made it all the way to the wall, but Greg Allen somehow managed to cut it off and combine with Lindor for a beautiful relay throw to the plate.
Gomes dropped the throw, and Kepler scored to make it 2-1 Twins. On top of that, four of the hits Shane Bieber allowed had a hit probability of less than 25% according to Statcast. Considering all of this, his performance — 6.1 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 7 K — looks a little bit better than fine.
The hits just came at the wrong time
Two years ago we complained, at the start of the season, that pretty much every Indians’ home run happened to be a solo shot. We had shades of that again tonight. It gets even more frustrating when the team had six more hits, but none of them came with runners in scoring position. To be fair, Edwin Encarnacion scored from first on a Yonder Alonso double, but other than that stranding eleven is no way to win a game.
It’s fairly late here on the east coast and I probably have to get finger surgery in the morning, so this recap has now come to a close.