The only Indians players that seemed to care about winning tonight were a pair of former Blue Jays teammates, who homered in back-to-back at-bats to tie the game up at two before the rest of the team promptly gave the lead right back to one of the worst teams in the league.
I know my long-term satisfaction as an Indians fan isn’t in jeopardy based on a few games in mid-September, but that doesn’t make games like tonight — and several over the last week — any more terrible to watch and have to sit through.
There’s nothing even left to evaluate about this team, at least not based on what we’re watching right now. This is in no way a reflection of the same team we’ll see in October, or probably even a week from now. They painfully obviously don’t care about playing to win (apologies for not being too jazzed about an attempted ninth-inning comeback against the Tigers), and it shows in their frantic approaches at the plate, atrocious relief appearances, and the fact that they were willing to start Josh Tomlin. The latter is the most relevant example, as it was literally a ploy to get Corey Kluber’s starts lined up with the ALDS start date — but again, that doesn’t mean it’s any less miserable to watch happen in real time.
The Indians are coasting.
Honestly, I can’t fault them for not caring anymore. Just don’t get hurt before the games matter, fine. As long as you believe you can ratchet up the intensity when it actually matters instead of risking life and limb to put the Tigers one step closer to 90 losses, so be it.
At least we got to watch Josh Donaldson hit a ball to space. We’ll always have that.
With the Indians snoozing their way to another loss against a basement dwelling opponent, even with a semi-furious rally in the ninth inning, the magic number removes above zero. Maybe tomorrow.