Player of the Game
Manny Acta gave Shelley Duncan the day off so someone else could win the ‘Player of the Game’ today. That someone was Mitch Talbot. Talbot threw 6.2 innings and only allowed one run that scored after he was taken out of the game. He earned a ‘POG’ score of 6.34, a fine improvement over his last game’s score of -12.20. This is Talbot’s second ‘Player of the Game’ of 2011 and his first since April 11th, before he went on the disabled list. It is also his first win since that game.
The defense looked more like it did at the beginning of the season, when the Tribe was leading the league in fielding percentage. Jack Hannahan had the hot glove at the hot corner all night, once jumping 20 feet into the air to snag a sure home run (I may be exaggerating). Matt LaPorta also came through with some fine glove-work, saving two runs on a diving stop at first. I am intentionally ignoring Orlando Cabrera as a part of the defense in this section, because he is an old man and the Indians won.
With the NBA Finals starting tonight, it seems appropriate that a couple Indians hit double-doubles. Grady Sizemore and Carlos Santana hit two doubles each and also knocked in two runs apiece. Michael Brantley and Jack Hannahan each hit doubles as well. Overall the offense looked much better than it has in the last couple series, scoring more runs (6) than all but one of the last 7 games.
During tonight’s game, Indians hitters struck out 9 times with runners in scoring position. All but one of these came within the first few innings and, while it is a good thing to have a lot of at bats with runners on second or third, it is almost useless to strike out in those situations. One of the worst offenses was when Matt LaPorta, with Grady Sizemore on second, struck out in the second. During the at bat, Grady had third base stolen before the pitch got to the plate and LaPorta fouled it off, making Grady return to second. Matt then struck out leaving him there to stay, as the Indians did not score again that inning.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 6, Toronto Blue Jays 3