Somewhere out there is a man or woman who was in a coma since 2014. They wake, slightly groggy, and turn on their favorite Indians team to see them losing, 7-1, to the Royals. The offense sucks, the starting pitcher struggles, and Josh Tomlin gives up a home run. Everything seems normal to them.
For the rest of us, this was a bizarre night of baseball. At least last night the Indians looked like they wanted to win, but Cody Allen blew it with four pitches. Tonight was a comedy of errors, the strangest being Corey Kluber’s total lapse of judgement on defense.
Not to even mention his off night on the mound, Kluber just didn’t seem right mentally tonight, and I don’t take saying that lightly.
First, he either did see Aldaberto Mondesi getting a huge lead at first base in the third inning, or he didn’t hear Yonder Alonso yelling when he started to steal. Kluber just went with his windup and threw a ball that allowed the speedster to take second and easily score on a single a batter later. Then, in the third with runners on first and second, Kluber picked up a dribbler and tossed it to first, instead of getting an easy out at third.
Neither of those are huge, but two small blips that we don’t often see from Kluber. I didn’t like it, much like I didn’t like anything in this game.
As for his pitching, Kluber oscillated between a couple good, complete at-bats with a glimpse of his Cy Young-winning curveball, and multiple curveballless (or ineffective curveball-filled) trainwrecks in a row crashing into each other just train after train endless fire and death crash bang so many tracks flying oh no one hit an orphanage that also housed a puppy store oh the humanity.
He wasn’t even hit hard most of the time, it was just vintage Royals bullshit with a bunch of weak singles and and hard-nosed base-running. I hate it and sort of envy it. Only three Royals batters had balls leave their bats over 100 miles per hour, the next closest was Alex Gordon grounding into a double play on an 84.7 mile-per-hour fastball.
The good news: The Indians didn’t have more strikeouts than hits (they only tied with five each). It was said as a joke in the game thread, but Melky Cabrera might just be the Indians’ best hitter right now. He’s the hottest, at least, with another two-hit effort tonight. Now, granted, he’s only 2-for-11 in his last three games but he’s still the Tribe’s best hitter in that span, probably. I need several drinks.
Oh, right, the Indians scored a run. Yeah, Jason Kipnis pointed out a ticky tacky balk and Yonder Alonso was allowed to walk home. An absolute juggernaut, this offense.
I know you’re sick of hearing that games in August don’t matter for this team — or maybe you don’t believe it — but just know the sun will rise tomorrow, Francisco Lindor will smile, and hopefully Jose Ramirez will hit a dinger. If the Indians started another 22-game winning streak right now all we’d be hearing about is how the Indians are peaking too early. Maybe they’re waiting to peak until early October.
Right now, that’s the only hope I have.