Player of the Game
With another great game, Zach McAllister takes his fourth Player of the Game of the season. His 12th positive game out of 15 (see the Player of the Game explanation for an in depth look at how the scoring works) gives him a total score for the year of 32.2, the highest of any starting pitcher. There are three relief pitchers with higher total scores than McAllister, Vinnie Pestano (54.7), Chris Perez (37.5) and Joe Smith (34). What is really disappointing is the amount of pitchers that are currently in negative numbers including all the starting pitchers except McAllister and Justin Masterson. Ubaldo Jimenez (-2.6), Corey Kluber (-8.1), Roberto Hernandez (-6.9) and Chris Seddon (-4.1) have all underperformed to this point in the year. For reference the top scorer for the Tribe so far in 2013 is Shin-Soo Choo with 163.6 points on the season, an average of 1.39 a game.
If there is one bright point that has been overshadowed by an incredible losing streak, it’s Casey Kotchman. He has been hot of late with 11 hits in his last nine games including 4 RBI and 3 runs scored. While this may not seem like a lot, the Indians have only scored 30 runs total in those games, so Kotchman has produced more than his own share while hitting from the bottom of the lineup. He is currently riding a five game hitting streak as well, the second longest active streak on the team (Carlos Santana has a 6 game streak).
Shin-Soo Choo has decided to start stealing again, which is great news for the Tribe. Choo stole two bases today, one leading to the Indians only run, after not having a single attempt in the last ten games. Choo has been a very high percentage stealer over his career with the Indians and brings a whole different dimension to the offense when he is threatening on the basepaths.
It seems like every team the Indians plays is playing their best baseball of the season. This is either incredibly bad luck in scheduling or the combination of bad Indians hitting and starting pitching bringing the best out of their opponents. This time it seems like the Mariners are legitimately hot as they played almost flawless defense and pitched well. Especially impressive were Kyle Seager at third base and Trayvon Robinson in left field. The Mariners also turned a rediculous amount of double plays in the series, stemming from good situational pitching and solid middle infield defense.
Vinnie Pestano blew the game today, but can you really blame him for the Tribe being held to just a single run yet again. Yes, pitching has been a problem all year, but even when they get a great start and good relief, they still lose. Quality starting pitching is meaningless without even a tiny bit of offense. The Indians ended the series with Seattle scoring a total of 5 runs in three games and have scored 5 runs in their last 4 games.
Play of the Game
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 1 – Seattle Mariners 3