Changing the format around a little bit, the Player of the Game will now be included in the game recap.
Player of the Game
Grady Sizemore won his first player of the game today, earning a ‘POG’ score of 3.36 in the Indians extra-inning win. Grady went 3-5 with a double and a walk, knocking in one and scoring once. This is only the second ‘Player of the Game’ award for any Indians outfielder in 2011.
Joe Smith was the second best player today, earning 2.91 ‘POG’ points by pitching 1.1 scoreless, hitless innings and grabbing the win.
The Indians scored early again today, plating one in the first inning. Being ahead early has been a strength with this Indians team that has been aided by the Tribe starters not allowing a run in the first inning of the last 15 games.
The base-running against the Royals was superb, most notably Michael Brantley taking two bases on an overthrown pick-off move at first. Brantley was half-way between second and third, when the Royals threw the ball to second. He made the smart move, and instead of being tagged out at second, was able to get to third. He scored on a play right after this. The Indians took 7 extra bases (runners moved up two bases on a single, etc) today and stole two more during the game.
Travis Hafner struck out in his first two at bats against Kyle Davies. While this might now seem like a good thing, what happened in his third at bat was. After trying to pull the ball in his first two at bats, Hafner adjusted and decided to go with it in his third and hit an opposite field double, one of 5 Indians extra-base hits.
The Indians missed a lot of opportunities tonight, although they made up for it in the 10th inning. During the game the Tribe went 4-14 with runners in scoring position with 11 men left on base. The Royals didn’t do any better at 1-8 and 7 left on.
This game was kind of weird in general tonight. Matt LaPorta got an error for a play that was called incorrectly by the second base umpire, but the runner was out at second any way as he left for the dugout, not knowing he was safe. At the end of the year no one will remember this and it will hurt the Indians and LaPorta’s overall fielding percentage, showing again that fielding percentage shouldn’t be all that important.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 7 runs on 13 Hits. Kansas City Royals 3 runs on 7 hits. The Indians have now won 4 in a row and 12 of their last 14, leading to a record of 12-4, the best start since 1999.