There are certain constants we can count on in life. The sun will rise in the morning. The grass will continue to grow. Cleveland in February will have brutal weather. Once in a while though, one of those constants is affected in a way that makes up begin to reevaluate our lives.
When the Cleveland Indians defeated the Detroit Tigers by a score of 8-1 on Friday night, one of the most unfortunate norms in Cleveland sports was turned upside down. I love the Tribe, and the Tigers are terrible, but there’s no debating that they’ve owned the Indians over the last few years. When the Indians beat Detroit on Friday, I thought for the first time that this team really might be able to make a miraculous late charge into the playoffs.
The unfortunate things with constants in life is that even when you don’t like them, they always come back. Going into last night’s game the Indians seemed to have the advantage with a streaking Danny Salazar taking the mound against a struggling Alfredo Simon, but that’s why you play the game, and Salazar struggled while Simon was absolutely dominant, and the Tigers prevailed over the Indians by a score of 6-0.
After an unsteady first inning which featured the kind of defense we saw from the Indians in the first half of the season, the Tigers scored their first run of the game in the bottom of the second inning when James McCann singled to center off of Salazar’s heel to score Tyler Collins. Detroit then scored two more runs in the bottom of the third inning when J.D. Martinez hit a home run with Miguel Cabrera already on first base to make it 3-0. Three more runs in the fourth inning chased Salazar from the game, and Detroit cruised to the 6-0 victory.
Simon was terrific for the Tigers, allowing no runs on just two hits and four walks in seven innings. He was never in any trouble and the Indians’ offense struggled as they have far too many times this season.
As bad as last night’s loss was, the Indians can still take the series with a win against the Tigers today. Facing a tough September schedule, the odds of a playoff run for the Tribe are extremely small, but I still wouldn’t bet against them getting back over that .500 mark by the end of the season.