The Indians are off to a little bit of an underwhelming start so far this season with a record of 22-19, but these past two games have been great; two straight wins against one of the best teams in the AL, the Houston Astros. The pitching has really stood out with two great starts from Trevor Bauer and Mike Clevinger and great performances from Andrew Miller and the rest of the bullpen. With this in mind here is what the pitching could look like moving forward into the dog days of summer.
In the past two games, Bauer (5.2 IP, 5 H, 3 ER) and Clevinger (7 IP, 2 H, 0 ER) had two surprisingly good starts against the Astros. Wth Clevinger showing promise this year so far after being called up from Columbus, you shouldn’t be surprised if the Indians keep him around even after Kluber comes back from DL. They could possibly just add him in and do an almost unheard of six-man rotation or send down Josh Tomlin.
Kluber is assigned to a three-inning game simulation against single-A hitters at Progressive Field. Once he gets back to full strength and if Clevinger can pitch like this consistently the rotation should be in good shape. For the bullpen, it has been one of the best if not the best in baseball (1.85 combined ERA) and it shows no sign of changing. Cody Allen has been a perfect 12/12 on saves this year. Andrew Miller has been a terrific middle inning reliever and Brian Shaw has come in and threw some good innings.
If the bullpen keeps up what they are doing, remains dominant and stays healthy, they should give us a good chance come October. As for the starters, the Clevinger situation is a pleasant surprise and once Kluber gets back to full strength this Indians team should get ready for a deep October run once again.
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