I was faced with quite a conundrum tonight – I wanted to watch the Indians/Royals game, but I had a ton of work I need to finish by Monday.  Since I have tickets to Saturday and Sunday’s games, I decided to hide out in a coffee shop for the night, free from distractions and more able to knock a few things off my “to-do” list.  Essentially, I sat alone on a Friday night, working for hours after I already worked all day.  And somehow, I’m still pretty certain that my night was more enjoyable than it would’ve been if I’d chosen to watch the game.

Don’t get me wrong – like an addict with their drug of choice, I still subjected myself to almost regular checks of the score.  And as you may expect, there were more Royals runs every time I looked.  As far as I could determine from the ESPN Game Cast, the Indians’ at-bats were over in a blink of an eye.  For the first couple of innings, I tried to convince myself that something was screwed up with the Game Cast program (although it seemed to lack any noticeable glitches when the Royals were at-bat)…even though I knew better.  The Indians only got five hits (2 of which came from Orlando Cabrera) against a pitcher that came into the game with a 4.65 ERA (he lowered it to 4.38).  Kansas City’s Sunday pitcher, Kyle Davies, has a 6-something ERA; that means that the Indians may actually score a run! (Although I won’t hold my breath).

Where do they even go from here?  This slump stopped being a rut in the road a few weeks ago – now it’s a sinkhole that just swallowed a house and a few cars.  The Tribe is still mentioned in reports of potential trades (Ubaldo Jimenez, Ryan Ludwick, Hiroki Kuroda, Jason Marquis, Jeremy Guthrie to name a few), but is it even worth it at this point?  I feel like any minor additions will just be sucked into the vortex at this point, unfortunately.  Outside of bringing Tris Speaker and Cy Young back to Cleveland (either via time machine, or bringing them back from the dead), I’m not sure a minor move will help. 

One thing that should be done immediately, regardless of a trade – Carlos Carrasco should be removed from the rotation and sent to Columbus.  He’s been extremely inconsistent this season, and downright lousy in the month of July.  While Kansas City has a respectable offense, I heard that most of his pitches were right out over the center of the plate tonight.  Why would you throw at someone’s head (like he did with Billy Butler) when you’re all but placing the ball on a batting tee in front of them?  I think he needs to go away to work on his mechanics and to cool off a little.

A final thought – my father (in a great moment of extremely wishful thinking) suggested that maybe the Indians are all keyed-up because of the trade deadline and that once July 31 passed, things would improve.  Once he mentioned that, I seemed to remember something similar used as an excuse in the past (I want to say last season?)  The Indians were uptight because of the trade deadline, and that was the reason for their poor play (only last year it was due to subtractions from the roster, not additions).  I decided to look at the week of July 24-31 for the past few years, as well as the post-deadline week (July 31-August 7) to see if there were any connections.  It was pretty inconclusive, but there was a distinct difference last year:

2010 (season record 69-93)

July 24-31: 2-6

July 31-August 7: 5-3

2009 (season record 65-97)

July 24-31: 5-2

July 31-August 7: 5-2

2008 (season record 81-81)

July 24-31: 3-4

July 31-August 7: 3-4

2007 (season record 96-66)

July 24-31: 2-5

July 31-August 7: 4-4

 As for this year, the Indians are at 52-51 (now just one measly game above .500) and are 1-4 so far this week.  In 2010 and 2007 they did do poorly before the trade deadline and better after, but their record was exactly the same in 2008 and 2009.  Even if there was some kind of bizarre July 24-31 choke, it’s still no excuse for the way they’ve played lately.

3 Comments

  • Jerry says:

    Tell me,

    Is this hitting slump unprecedented in Indians history?

    NO hit….. shut out…….. and tonight we have no hits in the third? Look at this……

    In July……

    RK TEAM GP AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI AVG OBP SLG OPS
    1 Texas 25 897 162 284 72 7 33 469 156 .317 .359 .523 .882
    2 Boston 24 869 156 257 57 5 37 435 147 .296 .371 .501 .872
    3 Kansas City 25 907 122 254 59 3 23 388 116 .280 .329 .428 .757
    4 Minnesota 27 919 133 253 42 3 20 361 122 .275 .339 .393 .732
    5 Toronto 24 851 135 233 55 2 26 370 127 .274 .333 .435 .768
    6 Oakland 24 805 115 220 46 3 20 332 112 .273 .341 .412 .754
    7 Detroit 24 823 102 219 37 4 20 324 97 .266 .329 .394 .723
    8 NY Yankees 24 811 110 211 41 5 20 322 108 .260 .329 .397 .726
    9 Tampa Bay 24 831 103 204 39 9 24 333 98 .245 .328 .401 .729
    10 Baltimore 24 798 100 191 34 2 38 343 99 .239 .297 .430 .727
    11 Chicago Sox 22 721 77 170 21 2 16 243 72 .236 .299 .337 .636
    12 LA Angels 25 816 101 191 44 2 24 311 96 .234 .298 .381 .679
    13 Cleveland 24 798 92 185 32 2 21 284 87 .232 .299 .356 .655
    14 Seattle 24 815 68 179 38 2 11 254 67 .220 .268 .312 .580
    LEAGUE AVERAGES GP AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI AVG OBP SLG OPS
    American League 24 833 113 218 44 4 24 341 107 .260 .323 .407 .730
    National League 24 827 100 209 43 5 20 322 95 .252 .316 .389 .705
    Major League Baseball 24 830 106 213 44 4 22 331 101 .256 .319 .397 .717

  • SeattleStu says:

    what’s worse, tribe failing to score with 1st & 3rd no outs (brantley’s ball was barely out of the infield, laporta has the mobility of an ox in honey and we send him??), the fact our front office idiots are actually considering dealing white et al for jiminez in an increasingly lost season or our inept lineup making another run of the mill pitcher look near perfect (about the 23rd time this season i think)….on the bright side fukodome is worth every penny….0 for 6, and looks worse than that….is anyone out there?

  • SeattleStu says:

    never a doubt tonight…..

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