Are the Indians nearing a tipping point on the season?
With training camp opening for the Cleveland Browns on Thursday, the Tribe could be in trouble of losing their spot as the current focal point among fans.
The Tribe finished off a disappointing road trip on Wednesday on a high note, beating Seattle by the score of 10-1. The Indians went just 2-4 on the six-game trip to open the second-half of the season and head home knowing they will be no worse than 3.5 games behind Detroit when they wake up in the morning. That is certainly not an insurmountable number by any means.
However, if the Tribe continues to struggle this weekend when they host the second-place Texas Rangers for three games and, come Monday, they are five or more games back of the Tigers, then more than a few fans will be more interested in what is going on in Berea that at Progressive Field.
It was a weird road trip for the Tribe, with some strange numbers:
- The Indians scored first in all six games but managed to just win two of them.
- The Indians scored 17 runs in their two wins, but just eight runs in the four losses.
- The Indians were shut out in 40 of the 54 innings they played on the trip. That stat probably needs some context, but we’re pretty sure the average major league team outside of Miami doesn’t go scoreless in almost 75 percent of its games.
- Third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall made four errors on the trip.
- As a team, the Tribe has committed 11 errors in its last seven games, which helps explain, in part, why they had a losing record on the trip.
- The starting pitching could not have been much better. Scott Kazmir, Corey Kluber, Justin Masterson, Zach McCallister and Ubaldo Jimenez combined to throw 36.2 innings, giving up just eight runs (1.96 ERA) and striking out 36.
- Kazmir started twice on the trip, pitching 14 innings and striking out 10 while posting an ERA of 1.29. In his last seven starts, Kazmir has worked 45 innings, posting a 3-0 record and an ERA of 1.60. Not bad for a fifth starter.
If the Tribe can keep up that type of pitching, and if the offense can get back to being a more consistent outfit, then the team may be able to survive for a few more weeks in Browns Town.
If not? Well .. let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.
(Photo by The Associated Press)