Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Game That Wasn't May Haunt Us!

Carlos...I love ya, man but ya just can't stand there!
The Indians battled back in the top of the ninth inning only to leave the bases loaded down one run.
Carlos Santana, with "Hero" written all over him, stood and looked at three straight pitches for strikes.
Did somebody super glue the barrel to his shoulder?
So I understand a young team will make mistakes but is there really ever any excuse for not swinging the all?
I do believe that this team will grow and mature this year and win a fair share of games.
They may even make a run for the playoffs just like '05 and '07 when they were picked then to finish in the cellar of the ALCD. (I KNOW they will make a run for it!)
But it is games like last night in Kansas City that will come back and haunt us.
Oh Hell, it will come back and bite us in the behind!
Think back to 2005 when the Indians came up about a game short of making the playoffs.
There were many games that if they went to other way, we would have been in and Boston would have been out.
Think back to the final home stand in Cleveland when Ozzie Guillen swept us.
Remember Ozzie giving the Indians' fans the choke sign?
Or the weekend before when we lost to Lou Pinella and his Devil Rays.
It is one thing to get beat but you just can't stand there with 2 out and the bases loaded and your team is down by 1 run in the ninth. That is movie material!
Just as Manny Acta has his pitchers firing first ball strikes (and that has been the key to their success season to date), he must get these guys to know when they have to swing.
When in doubt, clout it out!
Come on Carlos, a city is waiting to anoint you "Savior!"

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Get On Board!

Terry Pluto of the Plain Dealer is bracing for the collapse.

Sheldon Ocker of the Akron Beacon Journal is enjoying the ride with guarded optimism.

How about you?

Have you looked into the dugout to see what is going on?

  • FUN!




This isn't Murderers' Row and we don't (yet) have the Fearsome Four but we are winning.

So if we were losing as expected, these sportswriters would be telling us about how hard it is to compete in a small market with little payroll and a lack of fan support.

Instead, we are leading the ALCD with a 10-4 record (as today's game is in progress with the good guys ahead 4-2) and we are being cautioned to look at reality.


How will we ever get a winner in Cleveland if we don't believe?

As Orlando Cabrerra said when asked if this team was a contender, "Not yet, we need about another month and a half into the season but I think we have what it takes."

If anyone has told this team they are not supposed to win, they aren't buying it.

Look in the dugout, watch them grow together on the field, and strap in! We are in for a fun summer ride!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Come On Pluto, Throw Us A Bone!

Things are tough when perennially positive Cleveland Plain Dealer sports writer Terry Pluto warns that the Indians will not continue in their winning ways. Terry wants you and I to enjoy the ride while it lasts. Thanks Terry because that is just NOT what we need or want to hear right now. We have team owners with short arms and long pockets that will trade a free agent if there is even a hint of a collapse. Terry, did you forget 2005 and 2007? Those teams did the unexpected against huge odds against them. The 2005 Tribe made an August & September run and just missed the playoffs. The 2007 Tribe provided us with one of the most exciting and entertaining seasons we have ever had. The odds were stacked against that team from the snowed out opening weekend through the 7 game series vs. the Red Sox. I see many similarities in this 2011 team with the 2007 team.

  • Solid offense

  • Solid defense

  • Solid relief

  • Starting pitching that will require at least 2 of these guys to have career years
Yes, it is way too early to start printing playoff tickets but it is not too early by any stretch of the imagination to put some distance between the Tribe and the rest of the ALC teams. Tonight we go for 9 wins in a row. Fausto goes for his first win with one very good and one very bad outing season to date. He must be one of the guys that has to have a career year (like he did in 2007) for this run to be real. We can all sit back and wait for the collapse to come and say like Terry, "See, I told you so!" Better yet, I will stand and cheer at Progressive Field and when the "unexpected" successful 2011 season is over, I will say, "See, I told you so!"

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Manny Boner #1

What the hell are you thinking, Manny???? 4 right handed hitters sitting on the bench today with lefty John Danks on the mound for the White Sox! Currently the score is only 1-0 Chicago in going to the top of the 6th inning but the rain is falling a getting stronger. Who's on the bench? Austin Kearns while lefty hitter Travis Buck is in! Shelley Duncan sits with Travis Hafner and Michael Brantley playing. Michael Brantley is not Grady Sizemore and has not earned the right to play everyday regardless of a righty or lefty pitcher. With Shin Soo Choo struggling so badly, it might have been a good idea to rest him early in the season as well. As good as Jack Hannahan has been in the early going, why is right handed hitting Adam Everett sitting? Top of the 6th and we have only 4 hits with only one of them by a lefty, Michael Brantley. And what's up with Acta playing his starters almost entirely through the first 2 games? Come on Manny, let's see some strategy. These guys are going to need some help to win, especially with the poor starting pitching in our 1st 2 games. OK, hold it...Orlando Cabrera just put us ahead 2-1 with a 2 run HR! Still, use the bench! How about the Silent 1st Pitch by Anne Feller on Friday? Very classy!

I watched and watched the ball sit on the rubber until Fausto Carmona took the mound. Then I wasn't sure if he used that ball or gave it up for a game ball but he did pick it up. I kept thinking, from Anne Feller's hand to Fausto Carmona's hand...what inspiration that could have been knowing that the man being honored had pitched a no hit opener in Cleveland in 1940. That's Hollywood stuff but Fausto failed to seize the moment.

Anyway, if we lose this game today, I gotta put the blame on the skipper.

We need this win today...Come on Manny, lead the youngest team in the majors to their 1st victory today!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Opening Day, Hooray!

It's finally here, the Home Opener in Cleveland, Ohio!

And we are in first place this morning!

The festivities of the day are always so entertaining and moving at the same time.

I am so looking forward to the tribute to Bob Feller. Remember that the only opening day no hitter was pitched by Rapid Robert in Cleveland in 1940!

Fausto, this is a huge game for you in so many ways! Bigger than the Bug Game in 2007 when you were so dominant against those Skankees!

After the tribute to Bob Feller and the Silent First Pitch by his widow, you take the mound with a lot heaped on your shoulders. A city looks to you to lead us through this very important first game and set the tone for the season. After all, that is what the opener is all about!

It's time for a prediction, at least one for today...

Fausto comes out pumped and focused like he can, like he was in the Bug Game.

This fine fielding team that the Indians have assembled plays error free ball.

Despite the cold weather, we out hit the White Sox.

Final score, Cleveland 5, Chicago 3

A great start, setting the tone for what could be a very interesting and surprising season of Cleveland Indians Baseball!