I just can’t take this any more. I’m serious. This is beyond ridiculous.
The Cleveland Indians lost their eleventh consecutive game today, as the Minnesota Twins erupted for three runs in the ninth to erase a 5-4 Indians lead and win the game, 7-5. Indians all-star closer Chris Perez, who was last seen allowing five runs with two outs and nobody on in the ninth inning of Sunday’s game, blew the save again. His meltdown wasn’t quite as epic as last Sunday’s, but it was pretty close. Perez gave up a walk, three singles, a double, and a sacrifice fly over two-thirds of an inning.
The tying run scored when Justin Morneau hit a sharp grounder to Casey Kotchman at first. Not only did Kotchman fail to field it cleanly, he bobbled the ball and let it bounce to his right, which allowed Twins pinch-runner Darin Mastroianni to score from second. Perez reacted to this bit of adversity in his usual high-energy fashion, letting four of the next five batters reach base.
If somehow the Indians find themselves in a save situation in the next few days, Manny Acta should seriously consider managing his bullpen by letting someone other than Vinnie Pestano pitch the eighth inning, and giving Pestano the ball in the ninth to see if he can get the save. Will that hurt Perez’s feelings? Yeah, probably, but ask me if I care about that. On Sunday Perez went on Twitter and said that the blown save that day was “definitely the low point of [his] professional career,” and vowed to “work harder and get better.” If I were he, I’d keep off Twitter for a while, until say November or Deccember.
In fairness, though, the Indians’ defense cost them this game at least as much as Perez did. In the seventh inning, Tribe second baseman Jason Kipnis ended a 57-game errorless streak by letting a ground ball go between his legs, allowing Twins runners to score from second and third on what should have been the final out of the inning. Earlier in that inning, shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera misplayed a ground ball. When you’re a crappy ballcub—and the Cleveland Indians are now obviously a crappy ballclub—you can’t let your opponents get four and five outs in an inning and expect that it won’t come back to bite you.
Corey Kluber started for the Indians and turned in a decent performance, allowing three runs, only one of which was earned, over six innings. He should have gotten his first major-league win for his effort tonight. Instead, he gets a no-decision. Tough break for Kluber, and for the long-suffering fans of this team.
As stated above, the Indians have now lost 11 consecutive games, one shy of the team record of 12, set in 1931. They play the Twins tomorrow afternoon. Since the game won’t be televised, and since I’ll be at work then anyway, I won’t have to watch that game. I wish I hadn’t watched this one.