If I had told you a couple weeks ago ago that Carlos Carrasco would have 10 wins before the halfway mark, you might have called me a fool.
If I told you he would stand in the national spotlight, well, that might end the conversation.
The no-hitter bid ended with one out to go. That does not diminish the reality that the Indians got exactly what they needed. Not just a third win in a row. Not just a far more energetic performance in the three games in St. Petersburg, so far. What Carrasco provided was the kind of performance that SHOWS this team they can perform at elite level. They might have scoffed at that idea just Sunday evening after scoring ZERO runs in Baltimore. Showing is so much more effective than talking about a turnaround.
Being humans, many of us will associate this revival with Terry Francona‘s team meeting after the scoreless fiasco. Yeah, that helped, I suppose, but I think even Francona would agree there were a lot more factors than that. I’d even guess that Francona would emphasize the idea that many factors figure in turning a team around and a manager’s speech is a small one in that group.
Positive emotion is far more powerful that fear and loathing. Yelling at people only emphasizes negative thoughts and that’s why Francona was candid about saying he did absolutely no yelling (other than into the face of an umpire).
Now the Indians have some some excitement to build on:
The starting pitchers can perform with the best in baseball. The Rays were hitless through the early innings over all three games this week. The first 15 Rays batters were retired in EACH of those games. The team is a strikeout machine.
They are getting production from the young guys — Urshela and Lindor — where they received none early in the season.
Progressive Field might not be so somber now that the team has shown a spark.
If you ever wondered what it’s like to follow a no-bit hid on a newspaper’s sports desk, take a look at the Game Thread.