Tomlin swings the lumber
Josh Tomlin, who was an infielder at Texas Tech, hasn’t forgotten how to hit. After going 2-2 last season against the Diamondbacks, he went 1-3 on Friday night in St. Louis. His three career hits are now the 4th most by an Indians pitcher in interleague play. Only Bartolo Colon, Jaret Wright and, of course, CC Sabathia have more.
But Tomlin has a ways to go to catch Sabathia in terms of hitting success. Sabathia’s seven-game hit streak, spanning the 2003-06 seasons, is the longest by an American League pitcher since interleague play began.
Lopez on the verge of history
This may be the most shocking statistic I’ve seen all year. Jose Lopez is two games away from setting the record for the longest hit streak in Progressive Field history. His 19-game streak dates back to 2010 when he played for the Mariners. And to add another strange twist to this story, he’s currently tied with Joey Cora, whose streak also spanned his career with the Mariners and Indians.
The longest streak accomplished entirely in an Indians uniform is shared by Robbie Alomar and Kenny Lofton.
Don’t Knock The Rock
On Tuesday, Matt Young went 0-4 with four strikeouts, becoming the first player to strike out four times in his Tigers debut since Rocky Colavito in 1960. Colavito’s rough debut, which came just two days after the infamous trade, was also against the Indians.
Opposing teams tend to play Shin-Soo Choo straight away, but are they making a mistake? Over the past two seasons, just 15 of Choo’s 172 ground balls have been hit to the left side of the infield (8.7%). That’s actually a lower rate than David Ortiz (10.6%), who almost exclusively sees heavy shifts to the right side.
Take a look at the ground ball spray charts for Choo and Ortiz since the start of the 2011 season.
Congrats to Millwood and Co.
The Indians have waited a long time to see a no-hitter, but we’ve also waited a long time to see anyone who’s even worn an Indians uniform to throw one. Kevin Millwood and five other Mariners combined on a no-hitter on Friday night, making Millwood the first former Indian to be involved in a no-hitter since Blue Moon Odom in 1976. Odom, who pitched for the Tribe in 1975, combined with Francisco Barrios on a no-hitter for the White Sox.
On June 1, birthday boy Derek Lowe led the Tribe to a 7-1 victory over the Twins. Since 2008, the Indians are now 3-0 when their starting pitcher is celebrating a birthday, having also picked up victories from Scott Lewis (Sept. 26, 2008) and Aaron Laffey (April 14, 2009). But this stretch of happy birthdays is a very new trend for the Indians. From 1985 through 2007, the Indians were just 1-7 in such games. Charles Nagy was the lone victor in that span.
Derek Lowe also become the oldest pitcher to ever start a game on his birthday for the Indians. The previous record was held by 36-year-old Gaylord Perry.