Tuesday, August 26, 2008

30/30 and a half-game behind

The Tribe just kept rolling along last night, collecting their eighth straight victory with a 4-3 win in 10 innings in Detroit. This makes it 14 wins in their last 17 games and they are creeping closer to 3rd place in the Central, now just a half-game behind the Tigers. Grady Sizemore became just the second Indian in team history to join the 30/30 club, adding two more HR's last night. He now has 31 homers and 34 steals, and actually a decent shot at the exclusive 40/40 club with 32 games still left to be played.

Welcome to the 30/30 club Grady - got enough left for 40/40?
"He's unbelievable," manager Eric Wedge said of the three-time All-Star. "You wouldn't know if it was his first or his 30th. In a low-scoring ballgame, he set the tone. That's what he does. He does it from a spot in the order that can give us a lot of energy."

Newcomer Zach Jackson gave the Tribe another good start, going 6-1/3 and allowing 3 runs. Then the bullpen (where have you been all year???) really came through with some solid work, aside from Masa Kobayashi's two hits allowed and no outs recorded. Rafael Perez and Brandon Donnelly kept the Tigers scoreless for 2-2/3 innings. And the suddenly hot-hitting Franklin Gutierrez gave the Indians the lead for good in the top of the 10th with a shot to left field. Jensen Lewis came on to close things out was able to register a 1-2-3 10th for his 7th save in 8 chances. It makes me wonder how good this team could have been with a semi-consistent bullpen all year...

The Indians will look for their ninth in a row tonight with ace Cliff Lee on the mound for the good guys. He will look to improve on his 18-2 record and his 2.43 ERA... although I'm not sure what else he can do at this point for an encore. He has simply been incredible all year. With a win the Tribe would also move ahead of the Tigers in the standings for the first time since June.

Other Tribe Notes: Victor Martinez may finally be ready to return before the rosters expand on Monday. But not so fast for Travis Hafner. And Matt LaPorta is back in town after his beaning in China. Let's hope he's able to finish out the season in Akron.

Browns Updates: Brady Quinn will likely get another start in the Browns' quest to avoid injury before the season opener (a.k.a. their final preseason game). This is good news for Brady, as I'm sure he can't be happy with his performance in the last game. Although I'm a little concerned that Derek Anderson's next snap he takes in a live game will be on September 7th against the Cowboys... BQ has also been putting in some extra time with Donte Stallworth... And don't expect to see much from the Browns again in the finale, as they will be without lots of players.