Wow, it really seems like it’s been a long time since the Indians won a game.
Really, it’s only been since April 24, but four straight losses to division rivals really seemed like even more than that, especially considering the way the team looked like they had never hit or fielded a baseball before.
By today’s game, the Indians’ downward spiral found them with the worst record in the American League. Worse than the rebuilding Twins; worse than the snakebitten Rangers. Thanks, Sports Illustrated.
So a 7-4 win over Kansas City today means more than it ordinarily would. Not only does 7-13 look a lot better than 6-14, but it would only take a few more losses for the Indians to dig too deep of a hole to climb out of, especially with the Tigers and Royals flying so high.
The Indians tagged Yordano Ventura for five runs as members of the A’s and White Sox applauded appreciatively, laughing. Well, probably. Ventura broke his three-start streak of starting fights, but didn’t display the pitching acumen to live up to his reputation as a fighter.
Danny Salazar is starting to look like the breakout pitcher we have all been hoping he could be, pitching six innings, allowing four runs, walking nobody and striking out seven. He wasn’t lights-out by any means, but he definitely didn’t look like the guy whose spring was bad enough to earn him a trip to the minors.
As April winds to a close, the often-heard “it’s early” is going to become less and less of a viable excuse. The Indians can’t let it get to May still looking like the team that got swept by the Tigers, could hardly manage a hit against Houston, and played almost comically bad defense. The difference between a slow start and a doomed start is a game like this, when the slow starting team finally starts to show glimpses of the club it could become.
It wasn’t going to last. At least, not as bad as it was. The Indians were too good to be the AL’s worst team; Cody Allen wasn’t going to finish with an ERA over 12; Brandon Moss isn’t going to bat .200 forever; and glove-first shortstop Jose Ramirez wasn’t going to keep looking like he didn’t know how to use said glove. Our brains knew all this was true, but it sure is nice to see the proof with our eyes.