Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

Your first place Cleveland Indians!

After Thursday’s 1-0 win completed the Tribe’s sweep of Boston, the Indians are not only the second-hottest team in baseball (only Texas’ 6-game win streak tops the Tribe) but are in first place in the Central Division.

It’s the first time the Indians have been in first place at the end of the day since May 17, 2008.

And they did it in front of the largest crowd since Opening Day (according to Rick Manning).

Fausto Carmona bounced back from a horrific Opening Day start, where he gave up 10 runs and 11 hits in three innings of work, to shut down the Red Sox. Carmona held Boston to just two hits in seven innings of work.

The Tribe’s pitching the past few days has been absolutely phenomenal. Since the third inning of Saturday’s game, Cleveland pitchers have worked 43 innings and only given up nine runs – a 1.88 ERA.

The Indians needed that pitching today, especially with a lineup that included Austin Kearns (.000 batting average), Travis Buck (.143) and the struggling Shin-Soo Choo (.083). In fact, the Indians only had three hits on the day.

But one night after playing longball – with home runs from Asdrubal Cabrera, Matt LaPorta and Choo – manager Manny Acta showed the Tribe can also play little ball.

Adam Everett led off the bottom of the eighth with a walk and then stole second. Orlando Cabrerea sacrificed Everett to third and then Asdrubal Cabrera’s suicide-squeeze bunt put the Indians ahead in their fourth straight win.

“We did beat a very good ballclub – regardless if they’re struggling or not,” Acta said in published reports. “We won and it was a very well-played series. It wasn’t like they were sloppy and we got lucky. We played good baseball.”

Can’t argue with that. And we wouldn’t expect anything less from the longest-tenured coach in town.

We know it’s only been six games, and anything can happen when the Tribe goes out west for series with Seattle and Anaheim, but it’s sure been a fun first week of the season.

Most importantly, we’re ready to see more from this team.


Kent State made it official Thursday, promoting Rob Senderoff to the head coach position for the men’s basketball team.

Senderoff’s hiring is in line of KSU’s practice of promoting from within to the school’s flagship program.

The move should be popular with the players, more than half of which were recruited by Senderoff. That’s important as the team is only losing one player off this year’s 25-win team.

“It was good news to my ears,” guard Randal Holt told The Plain Dealer.

Leading scorer Justin Greene said the news was a relief, but also signaled some changes.

“Now it seems normal again,” the 6-8 junior said. “All the players feel comfortable, because we were all brought in by him. With the team we have coming back, we expect there will be some high expectations. But (Senderoff’s) best attribute is he will be tougher on us, held more accountable, than we have been in the past.”

The part about being more accountable is interesting. Plus the fact that the players don’t seem that upset that Geno Ford left.

Hopefully Senderoff is the right man to continue the team’s tradition of solid play. We’d hate to see the basketball team take a step back just because the school wants to emphasize football.

Some good reads on this from The Beacon Journal here and here.

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