Everyone is excited for All-Star Weekend to come to Cleveland this year. What an opportunity for a city and its fans that are more deserving than anyone! However, it’s a bit disappointing that our Tribe is in second place in the AL Central, six games behind the Minnesota Twins at the moment.
Sporting a 48-38 record, things aren’t as bad as people (including me) have made them seem. At one point, it felt like this season was quite the dumpster fire. Frankly, fans were overreacting.
The Indians have won four in a row and are 7-3 in their last 10. They currently hold the 2nd wild-card spot in the American League, one game behind Tampa Bay.
For those not familiar, they would play a one-game playoff on the road if the playoffs started today.
This season, well, it feels like 1997. I was just an infant at the time, but a lot of older Indians fans will give the nod of agreement because the similarities are undeniable.
That team only won 86 games.
They’re more famous for the meltdown against the Marlins in the World Series. Key is they made it all the way to Game 7 of the World Series with an 86-win season.
A common philosophy in baseball is simply…just get in. The rest is up to who gets hot at the right time…and a little luck! It’s not like the NBA where two powerhouses glide to the finals.
This year, getting Carlos Santana back (who will be participating in the home run derby as well as the All-Star Game), was the acquisition of the offseason for a team that lost a lot of key assets. Santana has a .302 average, 19 homers, 92 hits and 52 RBI.
Additionally, Fransisco Lindor has been his consistently great self. One surprise is Roberto Perez becoming this power hitter with 15 homers himself on year.
The pitching hasn’t been anything special. Shane Bieber leads the team with a 3.54 ERA. Trevor Bauer has the most wins at seven. Most impressively, Brad Hand has 23 saves compared to only one blown (also an All-Star).
Counting the remaining schedule and the Indians have 13 games left against the first-place Twins. Six are at home including a three-game series right after the All-Star Break. Sweep the Twins there and it’s a two-horse race for the rest of the season.
This has far-and-away not been the sexiest season in the history of the team. However, especially as of late, the guys are really starting to pick it up. The nice thing about a baseball season is that it is extremely long. There’s always time to get back in the race and finish strong.
Enjoy the weekend!