Red Right 88

In Cleveland, hope dies last

Archive for the tag “Cleveland Indians”

We’ve been doing the fan thing wrong all these years

red right 88We have been a Cleveland sports fan our entire life. And while there have been more disappointments than triumphs, we’ve never thought about being anything other than a Cleveland sports fan.

It hasn’t been easy, of course. And looking back over the decades, the level of sub-par play from the local sports teams has, if we’re being honest, rather depressing more often than not.

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Did the Tribe save its season by sweeping Detroit?

tribe sweeps tigersWe are always a bit hesitant when people try to add extra significance to a particular win, thinking that one night of success will somehow fix all that ails a struggling team.

That is especially true in a sport like baseball, with its 162-game marathon of a season. For example, when the Cleveland Indians scored 15 runs last week in a win against Toronto, there was talk that game would finally wake up the anemic offense. That didn’t happen, of course, as the Tribe was embarrassed over the weekend by Oakland.

But the three-game sweep the Indians just handed Detroit may truly have saved the Tribe’s season.

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From the editor’s notebook …

Nrendan-Rodgers_AP_2900575bWhile Manchester City’s Edin Dzeko may not have officially buried Liverpool’s title hopes on Saturday, he went as close to putting the final shovel of dirt on the dream as possible.

Dzeko’s two goals helped push City past Everton, 3-2, at Goodison Park and level with Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table. Most importantly, City had a nine-goal lead over Liverpool in goal differential, so it will take one more miracle from Brendan Rodgers’ squad to finish off the dream season with a league title.

Even though his team is in control of its own destiny, Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini is not ready to make room in the trophy case just yet.

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Indians quickly learning that it is no longer 2013

tribe lost in chicagoThe Cleveland Indians won 92 games and captured the second Wild Card slot in the American League in 2013 thanks in large part to two incredible, but ultimately unsustainable stats: their record against Minnesota and the Chicago White Sox (a combined 30-8) to go along with 11 walk-off wins.

Through the first two weekends of this season, it has become evident that it is no longer 2013.

The Tribe had a disappointing weekend in Chicago, dropping three-of-four to the White Sox. Add that to last weekend’s series against the Twins, when the Indians lost two-of-three, and things have taken a turn for the worse early in the season.

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Are the Browns going to lose their Alex Mack gamble?

alex mack offer sheetEver since early in the 2013 NFL season when the news came out that Alex Mack was not going to negotiate a new contract with the Cleveland Browns until after the season, we’ve been on the side of not worrying about anything until their is something to worry about.

Well, we may now have something to worry about.

The news came out today that Jacksonville will sign Mack to an offer sheet on Friday, one that will be for five years and is reportedly “designed to make it as difficult as possible for the Browns to match” the offer.

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From the editor’s notebook …

tribe carrasco twinsIt was a rough start to the home portion of the 2014 schedule for the Cleveland Indians.

In dropping two-of-three to the Minnesota Twins who are not … very good … the Tribe was done in by its starting pitching and lack of clutch hitting.

Danny Salazar had the best start of the weekend, even through the struggled through 5.2 innings of work in Friday’s home opener. While he gave up seven hits, Salazar managed to find a way to hold the Twins to just two runs and give the offense time to rally.

Carlos Carrasco had his own issues on Saturday, but unlike Salazar, Carrasco doesn’t have the makeup to work himself out of problems. Carrasco followed Salazar’s lead by working just 5.2 innings and giving up seven hits, but he couldn’t keep the Twins off the scoreboard in giving up five runs (four earned).

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Five and fly: Indians take opening series from A’s

tribe opening series oaklandThe Cleveland Indians did an effective job in taking two-of-three from Oakland to open the 2014 Major League Baseball season.

While the Tribe left in late in both wins – scoring twice in the ninth in the first game and three times in the ninth in the third game – they got things done when they needed to.

Here are five quick takeaways from the series:

The starting pitching was iffy …

Justin Masterson looked primed for a big contract year in the season opener, holding the A’s to just three hits and no runs over seven innings. If he keeps pitching like that, the Tribe will be happy, even though each successful start brings Masterson closer to the type of big-money contract the Indians have no way of matching.

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Time for Indian summer to return to Cleveland

Terry Francona, Jason GiambiThe Cleveland Indians open the 2014 season tonight in Oakland as Justin Masterson takes the mound for what could be his final Opening Day start in a Tribe uniform.

The Tribe surprised last year by winning 92 games and capturing the second Wild Card spot in the American League. It was the team’s first winning season and first playoff appearance since 2007. The Indians will be looking this season to post consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2000-01 and make back-to-back playoff appearances for the first time since 1998-99.

It won’t be easy, though. (Of course, this is Cleveland, so when is anything easy?) The Detroit Tigers are still the team to beat in the American League’s Central Division even though they traded Prince Fielder and Doug Fister. The Tigers can still hit, though, with Miguel Cabrera (.343 with 17 home runs and 55 RBI against the Indians over the past three seasons) and Victor Martinez (.380 vs. the Tribe over the past three years), and pitch, with Justin Verlander (7-3 with a 2.96 ERA against the Tribe in the same time frame), Anibal Sanchez (2.20 ERA in the past three years vs. Cleveland) and Max Scherzer (7-1 vs. the Tribe), so the Indians are not catching any breaks there.

The Kansas City Royals are also a trendy pick after posting their first winning season in a decade; they have also been stockpiling young talent that may be ready to pay off. And even though the Indians finished six games better than the Royals in the standings, they were only 10-9 against Kansas City last year.

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5 Questions: Cleveland Indians ready to open 2014 season

tribe giambi homerThe Cleveland Indians open the 2014 season Monday night in Oakland.

The Tribe is coming off a season that saw the team win 92 games and earn the second Wild Card slot in the American League. They did it by winning 20 of their final 25 games (including 10 consecutive to close out the season) as pretty much everything that manager Terry Francona did in his first season in town worked.

The Indians enter 2014 looking to close the gap with Detroit in the A.L. Central Division, post consecutive winning seasons for the first time since the start of the millennium and go to the playoffs for the first time in consecutive years since the 1990s.

To get ready for the season, we brought together some of the best baseball minds on the Internet to talk about what is in store for the Tribe this year for an installment of 5 Questions in 5 Minutes.

Today’s participants are:

Nino Colla from The Tribe Daily. He can be found on Twitter @TheTribeDaily.

Mike Brandyberry from Did the Tribe Win Last Night? Follow him on Twitter @DidTribeWin.

Adam Burke, formerly of The Cleveland Fan, and a contributing writer at bangthebook.com. Find him on Twitter @SkatingTripods.

Andrew Clayman, founder of East of Ehlo. He is on Twitter @EastofEhlo.

Ash Day from Let’s Go Tribe. He is on Twitter @AshDay29. (He’s also an Arsenal fan, but he’s still OK, so be nice.)

Al Ciammaichella from The DiaTribe. Find him on Twitter @Gotribe31.

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Are Pro Days really that important? – Part 2

johnny manziel pro dayA few days ago we raised the question of whether or not there is any real value in attending a college player’s Pro Day.

That was in response to the reaction from a few members of the local media who were furiously trying to manufacture a controversy because Cleveland Browns general manager Ray Farmer and the team’s scouts were attending the various Pro Days – rather than head coach Mike Pettine and offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.

We thought about that today at the gym while watching ESPN’s coverage of quarterback Johnny Manziel’s Pro Day at Texas A&M. After watching Manziel do his thing, we came away with two indisputable conclusions.

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