The Indians thought they were getting a potential ace in Carlos Carrasco when they traded Cliff Lee to the Phillies. Tonight, the man they call “Cookie” looked every bit of that type of pitcher.
Carrasco went seven superlative innings, giving up just three hits and striking out five. The Orioles trotted out former Indian Ubaldo Jimenez (4.1 INN/5 H/6 ER/5 SO/3 BB), who looked very much like the frustrating version of himself that we all know so well. It took all of four batters for the Tribe to take advantage of Jimenez’ familiar wildness, as Carlos Santana would absolutely launch a three-run homer into the shrubbery in centerfield. From then on, it was all about Carrasco and the bullpen.
Thanks to another three-spot in the fifth, highlighted by a two-run shot by the Smooth One, Carrasco and company was free and easy after going through an extended offensive lull. The Tribe’s pitching ran off a run of 19 straight Oriole hitters, which was admittedly aided by a rather wide Ron Kulpa plate, but with how locked in Cookie was tonight, it probably wasn’t going to matter.
The Indians have shuffled and discarded pitchers left and right all year to maintain their hope of the playoffs. If Mickey Callaway has figured out how to work his magic on a troubled pitcher again, you have to feel better about the Indians’ chances heading forward.
The Tribe will go for the sweep tomorrow as Danny Salazar faces off against Kevin Gausman
W: Carlos Carrasco (5-4); L: Ubaldo Jimenez (4-9)