The Good: Michael Brantley had three hits and three RBI. The Bad: Pretty much everything else.
On Omar Vizquel’s enshrinement weekend, his current employer sent the Indians a stern message that the Tigers are not ready to concede their grip on the AL Central. The Tigers came in as the bully on this splendid weekend and came away with a 10-4 exclamation point on Sunday.
Today was everything that exemplified that has plagued the Tribe. Josh Tomlin’s (4 INN/8 H/8 R (5 ER)/5 SO/2 BB) bad day started early as he gave up a solo shot to right-center from Miguel Cabrera. He would cash in another RBI basehit next time up. But Tomlin’s shakiness would give way to a full-fledged meltdown in the fifth inning, thanks in no small part to shoddy defense once again biting the Indians in the butt.
This is the fifth inning. Avert your eyes:
Basehit to Ian Kinsler. Stolen base by Kinsler. Austin Jackson singled, Kinsler to third. Victor Martinez safe on an error by Mr. Errorstop himself, Asdrubal Cabrera. Bourn has a line drive pop out of his glove for consecutive errors that scored Jackson and Cabrera. Nick Castellano would clear the bases and knock Tomlin (when can we start calling him Sowers Right or Scott Lewis Reborn and it not be a pejorative?) out of the game. Kyle Crockett and John Axford would each tally a run of their own, and the rout was on. 9-0.
Brantley would double a run home making it 9-1 of Max Scherzer (6 INN/6 H/1 ER/ 8 SO/2 BB), who was in cruise-control. Alex Avila would get that run back in the top of the sixth.
The Tribe would muster some noise in the bottom of the ninth with three runs, but it amounted to nothing more than window-dressing.
Suffice to say, this long weekend sets up a crucial make-or-break west swing starting on Tuesday in Phoenix.
It’s up to the boys in Brazil to make something of today.
W: Max Scherzer (9-3); Josh Tomlin (4-5)