Wednesday, September 26, 2007

By The Light Of The Silvery Moon...Stretch, Yawn, ZZZZZZZ, Whoa!

The Indians and manager Eric Wedge began their quest for home-field advantage in the playoffs last night around 10:07 Cleveland time and ensured that they would maintain the best record in baseball sometime after 2:00 AM.
It rained most of the day in Seattle, but come game time, the Mariners were able to open their Safeco Field dome to a cool, clear night.
Not the case back in the game began, thunder, lightning, and a hard rain reminded fans that this game was in another locale. At times, my reception of Sports Time Ohio resembled a slide show instead of live action. As the lights and the T.V. transmission of the game flickered, the game got underway. The Indians began the first inning with a 3-run home run off of the bat of Victor Martinez. They would not score again for 11 more innings.
Soon the rain, lightning, and thunder gave way to clear skies that opened up for a moon waxing to full through the night and the game.
Aaron Laffey pitched five and two thirds solid innings giving up 1 run on 4 hits, striking out 3 while walking 2 Mariners. The Indians received solid relief from Jensen Lewis and Rafael Perez until the bottom of the 9th inning. With the Tribe ahead 3-1, Joe Borowski entered the game and made it a nail-biter, giving up a 2-run home run to Adrian Beltre to tie the game and force extra innings. Just what the fans at home, fighting to stay awake needed.
The moon loomed bright and full, helping to keep Cleveland awake for more drama.
Once again, the relief pitching answered the call with solid performances by Aaron Fultz, Tom Mastny (got the win), and Rafael Betancourt (got the save).
In the top of the 12th inning, Asdrubal Cabrera pinch hit for Josh Barfield who had gone 0 for 4 but made some very slick defensive plays. Cabrera walked on 4 straight pitches. Ryan Rowland-Smith relieved Brandon Morrow. Cabrera drew the attention of Smith as he threw a pick-off attempt into the dirt that bounced past first baseman Jose Vidro. Cabrera did not hesitate as he ran from 1st to 3rd on the throwing error. Cabrera continues to impress with his hitting, fielding, and command of the game. Kenny Lofton, who was 0 for 5 in the game, hit a line drive sacrifice fly to center field that scored Cabrera for the winning run.
Other highlights included Grady Sizemore entering the game as a pinch hitter for Ben Francisco in the 8th inning, keeping his consecutive game streak alive at 352 games.
The Tribe shined on as they picked off another win on their way to home field advantage in the playoffs.
With a double header today under a the glow of a full moon, let's see if the Tribe can continue to gain full advantage for the post season...We will need coffee, lots of coffee, and a bright, bright full moon to see it all...Keep the curtains open!

Cabrera scores the game winning run through his aggressive style of play!

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