Well, sometimes baseball is just bad.
Shane Bieber earned his first career loss in a 6-0 trampling by the Oakland Athletics. At no point in the game did the Indians really threaten to do much of anything at the plate as they squandered three golden opportunities to put a run on the board.
The first run allowed by Bieber only happened with help from a sun-blinded Lindor and a typically blind umpire. Jed Lowrie popped up to short for what should have been the final out of a routine first inning. Instead, the always-pesky billions of years old fusion explosion kept Lindor from seeing the baseball until it nearly hit him in the face.
Allowing a hit on something that silly wouldn’t have mattered if the umpire hadn’t blown two calls in the next at-bat. Bieber painted the corner on two beautiful strikeout pitches that instead became balls one and two. One missed strikeout call? Fine. Two in a row? You deserve to be launched into the aforementioned ball of fire. The Ump seemed to realize he blew it because calls on the corners for Bieber where much closer to reality for the rest of the afternoon. Unfortunately, that didn’t erase a run-scoring double.
Bieber also coughed up a run in the second inning, although this one was entirely his fault. He gave up lead off double, and after the runner advanced to third they scored on a single. He misfired again when allowing a two-run shot to Stephen Piscotty in the top of the sixth.
Did Bieber pitch a Solid Game? Probably not. It wasn’t bad, nor was it mentally weak, suboptimal, etc. If you get through six innings while allowing four runs (I really do think the sun-single should have been an E6) you’re still giving your team a decent shot at winning. Neither solid nor sour, then. Unfortunately, the offense wasn’t up to the task today.
About the Offense
The Indians put runners on second and third base in the second inning with none out and could not drive in a run.
The Indians loaded the bases in the bottom of the fourth and couldn’t get a run in. In both cases, Erik Gonzalez committed the fateful third out.
They also had runners on first and second in the bottom of the sixth with no out and failed to score.
Have you ever wanted to grab your neighbors drink, finish it, and then bash it over your head while yelling “WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN US JOBU?!” in the middle of an airport bar? I have.
Ultimately the lack of execution with runners in scoring position may not have mattered given the number of runs allowed by the pitching staff, which ended up totaling six. It’s not as if the bullpen completely imploded. Do we want them to give up two runs in three innings? No. But hey, no Hindenburg comparisons, so...
About the point I’m trying to make
I guess I’m trying to point out that today’s Cleveland Indians baseball game was not good baseball, and it felt bad to watch it. No, this loss was not a catastrophe. No, there aren’t a ton of conclusions to be drawn from a single day in July.
Still, Shane Bieber earned his first career loss, and perhaps we should pour one out in acknowledgement.