The Indians needed Jeanmar Gomez today. What they got was more of the same (lately) combo of slack starting pitching and weak situational hitting in a listless 6-3 loss to the Royals. The defeat is the Tribe’s fifth in the last six games as they end May 16-14 and in 2nd place, 27-23 overall. The Indians’ season series record drops to 9-7-1.
The Tribe stranded 10 runners and twice failed to score with the bases loaded. In a bizarre sequence with runners on first and third, Shelley Duncan was caught off third on a pickoff throw to first and tagged out at home to end an inning.
Gomez lasted only 5 innings and yielded 10 hits and 5 runs. Rookie reliever Scott Barnes, obtained from the Giants for Ryan Garko and just recalled from AAA, made his major league debut and pitched a scoreless inning.
The Tribe made it interesting in the 9th but squandered another opportunity. After an out, Choo, Kipnis and Cabrera reached to load the bases. Jose Lopez then grounded into a double play on the first pitch to end the game. As a team, the Indians are batting only .200 with the bases loaded.
This is a club with little margin for error and lost opportunities with men on and spotty starting pitching are a deadly combination right now.
Ponder. Ponder a bit longer.
Johnny Damon. Two hits off LHs to ‘jump’ his average to .171. He heard Stephanie was packing his bags for an island excursion.
Scotty Barnes. Not a Slugger but a scoreless debut always qualifies. Maybe he can hit, too.
Shelley Duncan. A hit and a run scored but a bonehead play at 3B and struck out with 2 runners on and no outs in the 3rd. Soon he’ll hear Tattoo’s voice, “Da plane! Da plane!”. Maybe he’ll get a parachute.
Jose Lopez. Bases loaded, bottom of the ninth. Ground ball double play on the first pitch. Clutch.
Aches and Pains:
You knew it would happen. You did. It happens every season, sometimes more than once. Travis Hafner went on the DL.
Lou ‘Badass’ Marson remained sidelined (3 games) with stitches in his mouth after he took a curveball in the face. Did anybody notice his absence? Santana is eligible to return this weekend against the Twins.