The Cleveland Indians are many things, one of the founding members of the American League, an organization that puts character first, a great way to spend some time with the family. One thing they are not though, is a good offensive baseball team. The Tribe was shut out, 4-0, in the first game of their double header against this Baltimore Orioles today in Camden yards. That doesn’t sound too worrying until you realize it’s the third time they’ve been shut out this month.
Jimmy Paredes played the part of Indians killer today. The Orioles’ Designated Hitter hit a two-run home run to give the O’s a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning. He then hit a double in the bottom of the sixth inning and scored when Chris Davis hit another double to drive him in. All in all, Paredes was 2-2 with a home run and a double to go along with a pair of walks, raising his season average to .326. His work, combined with a solo homer by Manny Machado earlier in the sixth inning were more than enough runs for the Orioles to win today.
Other than his problems with Paredes, Indians starter Trevor Bauer was solid, and the four runs he allowed in six innings don’t really give a clear picture of how well he pitched. On concern with Bauer is the amount of walks he has allowed. Although he only gave up the two walks Paredes today, Bauer has now walked 41 batters this season, the most by any pitcher in the American League. This is a big reason why Bauer’s pitch count is so high fairly early in games and why he rarely lasts past the sixth inning.
Former Indian Ubaldo Jimenez continued his solid season for the Orioles after a rough first season with the team. Jimenez allowed four hits and didn’t walk a batter in eight shutout innings, one of his longer starts of the year. Jimenez is pitching much like he did in the second half of 2013 when he was a huge part of the Indians winning 92 games on their way to a wild card berth.
This continues a streak of poor offense for the Indians overall. Over their last twenty-three games, the Indians have scored just 66 runs, good for just 2.87 runs per game. Whether or not the era of power hitting is over, that kind of offense makes it nearly impossible for any team to win consistently at the Major League level. If the Indians are going to turn things around this season, they simply have to find a way to generate more offense. Hopefully tonight’s game will bring more offensive success for the Tribe.