Visa Update: Fausto Carmona has been granted his return to the United States and will be in Cleveland tomorrow for a press conference. Carmona was suspended for 3 weeks starting today for lying about his name actually being Fausto Carmona. Roberto Hernandez Heredia (back of jersey will say Hernandez 55) will be allowed to rehab in the Indians minor league system while suspended and will be able to return to the Tribe on August 11th.
Roster Update: The Indians signed reliever J.C. Romero to a minor league contract and sent him to AAA Columbus in an effort to make the Clippers more like the Twins teams of the mid 2000′s.
Player of the Game
Shin-Soo Choo wins tonight’s Player of the Game on the strength of his solo home run, the only run scored by the Indians during the game. It was his 11th on the season and gave him a Player of the Game score of 2.90, just edging out tonight’s starter Zach McAllister who earned a 2.33. McAllister has had 9 straight positive games this year, the longest stretch of any Indian player this year.
Zach McAllister had much better command over his non fastball pitches than in any other game this season as he dominated the Orioles over 6 innings. Of course he pitched into the 8th inning, so that kind of marred his night.
Both teams played spectacular defense in tonight’s match up, backing two solid pitching performances. Especially impressive was each team’s third baseman as there were a few tough plays at the hot corner for both sides. The best play of the night has to go to this one, however, a web gem of a catch by Nick Markakis.
Jim Thome hit a home run last night, but it wasn’t mentioned, because it wasn’t important to the final score. Tonight’s home run was. Thome hit a two run home run (career 611, 7th All time) in the 7th inning for the O’s, giving them a one run lead, their first of the night.
You don’t win many games when only scoring a single run and you don’t win many series when scoring a total three runs during the first two games. This offense isn’t reminiscent of the Jim Thome, Manny Ramirez years (two players the Indians could have had this year on multiple occasions and still could), but it isn’t this bad either. It seems very improbable that this many good players (Carlos Santana, Jason Kipnis, Travis Hafner and Asdrubal Cabrera) could all be struggling at the same time. Any way you put it, the Indians will not go to the playoffs by playing .500 ball and they are currently sitting there while Detroit has taken advantage of the White Sox struggles and has moved into first place.
Play of the Game
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 1 – Baltimore Orioles 4