Both C.C. Sabathia and Fausto Carmona of the Cleveland Indians are sitting on 14 wins each. The problem is that, because of a struggling offense on the part of their teammates, C.C. has been sitting on 14 wins for 3 straight starts and Fausto just got #14 after sitting on 13 wins for 3 straight starts prior.
The last time the Cleveland Indians had two or more 20 game winners in a season was in 1956 with Early Wynn, Bob Lemon, and Herb Score. The last time they had one 20 game winner was in 1974 with Gaylord Perry.
So, can they do it?
Beginning tonight, the Indians play a tough run of 23 games in a row caused by one of the snowed out games from April with Seattle added to the schedule as well as a rainout with Minnesota. Based on the current pitching rotation and adding a fifth starter back for this 23 game run, here is how the starts for C.C. and Fausto should unfold...
C.C.’s probable starts will be:
8/24 vs. KC
8/29 vs. MINN
9/3 vs. MINN
9/8 vs. LAA
9/14 vs. KC
9/19 vs. DET
9/26 vs. SEA
9/30 vs. KC
That is 8 starts against 3 teams under and 5 team at or better than .500.
Fausto’s probable starts will be:
8/21 vs. DET
8/26 vs. KC
8/31 vs. CWS
9/5 vs. MINN
9/10 vs. CWS
9/16 vs. KC
9/22 vs. OAK
9/27 vs. SEA
That is 8 starts against 5 teams under and 3 teams at or better than .500.
Unless the 5th starter is removed from the rotation after September 12th, which is unlikely, the rotation and schedule will more than likely play out as above.
It appears that Fausto has the best shot at reaching the coveted 20 wins. However, the way both players have been pitching, if the offense and their bats were to wake up, both pitchers could reach the 20 wins plateau. For that to happen, the Tribe would need to win 12 out of the 16 games these two pitchers have remaining.
There are 39 regular season games remaining for the team. However, if the team won these 12 out of 16 games with their two aces and played .500 ball for the remaining 23 games, they would win 24 of 39 games and finish the season at 92 and 70, more than likely good enough to win the American League Central Division…Can you see it?