So last night’s game was, um, long. The kind of long where you start to wonder if the Indians were actually playing The Iowa Baseball Confederacy instead of the Oakland A’s. It was not an exciting game. It was a test of wills, and I’m so glad the Indians pulled out a win. It’s become cliched to say that a team is “full of young players who are hungry to prove themselves,” but that’s what these guys are. That was an ugly game, and to have come out on top speaks well to their collective stamina and determination.
Ubaldo Jimenez had a decent start. Not the start of an ace, but a respectable start. Six innings, three earned runs, six strikeouts. The strikeouts came in the last seven batters he faced. Does that say he needs to warm up more or that he’s just a streaky kind of pitcher? As far as the offense last night, well, they got the job done eventually. Kudos to Jack Hannahan for stepping up in such a meaningful way over the last month. I don’t want to imply causation, but his hot streak seems to coincide with the birth of his son. Keep being a good influence, Baby Hannahan.
Going into it, I didn’t think the game was going to be that long. I mean, who would? During commercials I skipped around the dial and saw that My Cousin Vinny was on, which is one of those movies that never fails to make me laugh. The score had been tied at 3 since the 6th inning. Jim Thome led off the bottom of the 8th (in what would normally have been the late innings but here were only the middle innings). I figured this would be the moment that he’d send one over the wall to give us a one-run lead, the bullpen would do its thing, and we’d all go to sleep. I even did my best fan juju to help things along. You know how it always seems to happen that the one time during a game when you switch channels or go into the other room or answer the phone or just look away is the moment when a big play happens? I thought I’d hasten a Tribe win by switching over to My Cousin Vinny during Thome’s at-bat. So I changed channels and watched this awesome scene (seriously how wonderful is Marisa Tomei in this?). I changed back and saw that Thome had gotten out.
Carlos Santana was coming to bat. Santana had hit home runs in the previous two games against the A’s, no doubt because he somehow instinctively knew that Stephanie was in the hospital and that he had to hit them to make her feel better. This time I watched a couple pitches before switching back to My Cousin Vinny so I could see this scene. When I came back, we were in the 9th with the score still tied. And that’s how it went for the next seven innings. Despite my best efforts to fool the baseball gods by leaving and coming back, the game went on and on and on. Finally, in the 15th inning, I did things properly and went to bed. The Indians won in the 16th. Next time I promise I will go to bed earlier.