It was good; it was bad. They won; but they didn’t look very good. The pitcher everyone is worried about got a quality start, but is it a quality performance to allow three runs in six innings?
The Indians showed why the only folks who aspire to reach a .500 record are losers. It’s better but not good enough. We should all hope these games will be forgotten in October.
If you are waking up Wednesday morning, the score in Tuesday’s game was 11-4. Josh Tomlin got the win. Carlos Santana, Francisco Lindor, Michael Brantley, Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Ramirez had multiple hits. Those are the positives.
The negatives were ample, too. Tomlin struggled early and it was not at all clear that he had shed the troubles that gave him an inflated ERA in the 6.1 innings he toiled before Tuesday’s game. He hardly showed the excellence that made him 9-1 with a 3.32 ERA in the middle of last season. But he didn’t look totally lost as he did in August when he was banished from the rotation.
Tomlin allowed seven hits and three earned runs over six innings, so his ERA now stands at 11.68 for the season. Yes, that qualifies as a quality start at the outer limits of quality but you must concede the trend is positive. Tomlin walked no one, retaining his distinction for having allowed more home runs than walks in his CAREER (121 HRs, 109 BBs). Sandy Koufax and Bob Feller could not say that, although it seems likely that never occurred to them as something they would enjoy declaring.
Tomlin faced 25 batters and 55 of his 85 pitches were strikes, so it’s realistic to assume he could have labored longer if Terry Francona had desired a longer look. Instead, the Indians went to Dan Otero, who allowed a hit and a walk in the seventh and went out for more in the eighth. The right-hander ended his day shouting into his glove as Miguel Sano ran around the bases after a colossal home run to right field.
Boone Logan topped off the inning with three strikeouts but not without allowing two more hits.
The world got its first look at Nick Goody in an Indians uniform in the ninth inning, at least that part of the world still hoping for entertainment from a long game whose result was no longer in doubt. He allowed one walk and one strikeout. It’s fair to assume some of the folks reading this account chose to get a nice night’s sleep rather than staying awake to inspect this report when it was fresh.
Yes, the suspense of seeing a .500 record manifest itself was not worth losing sleep over, but consider the alternative. Tomlin was good enough to help his team attain mediocrity. The three errors were not worth whining about. The Indians allowed no unearned runs.
It counts as a victory and it was gained without use of the relief pitchers – Bryan Shaw, Andrew Miller and Cody Allen – who represent the core quality the Indians renowned pitching. There will be plenty of time to work on Corey Kluber‘s 6.38 ERA, Yan Gomes’ .158 batting average and all the other reasons we can’t call this team a winner – yet.