Player of the Game
Scott Kazmir looked great today, going from the first hitter in the game through the first batter in the fifth inning without allowing a base runner. This was Kazmir's second to last start of the regular season and he let it all out, striking out ten and allowing just five base runners in 7+ innings.
Milestone Alert: Playing in his 810th career game today, Asdrubal Cabrera has now ranks 50th all time in games played by a member of the Cleveland Indians. Right now he is tied with Casey Blake, but will certainly move past him within the next two days. Only ten short stops have played more games than Cabrera and he is signed through 2014 as well.
Houston mixed things up this time around, throwing out their only right hander scheduled to pitch this series, Paul Clemens. The Indians liked the change of pace and scored more runs in the first inning than in either of the first two games. Michael Bourn and Nick Swisher lead the game off with hits before a Jason Kipnis sacrifice fly brought home Bourn. Michael Brantley then came through with a two out, two run home run to make it 3-0.
Unlike Jason Giambi (read on), Nick Swisher has finally caught on during the month of September, batting .304 on the month after reaching base safely three times today. He ended a season high nine game hitting streak last night (0-3 in the seven inning affair), but started things right back up tonight with two walks and a single.
Milestone Update: Cody Allen pitched in his 72nd game of the season, making him tied for the sixth most used pitcher in a single season in Indians history.
Scoreboard Watch: For the second day in a row, the Indians had a chance to move into the top spot in the AL Wild Card chse, but were unable to as Tampa refused to lose. The positive about this is that they beat the Orioles twice in a row, pushing them to the back of the pack. The Yankees also won in an early match with San Francisco. Assuming the Indians don't completely fall apart, the only real threat now is the Texas Rangers, who are playing Kansas City right now.
Jason Giambi hasn't been very good this year, but even with a limited workload, he seems to be tiring as the season has dragged on and of late he has been even worse. Today, he had a chance for at least a sacrifice fly with Cabrera on third with one out in the fifth, but struck out. This makes it more than a month since his last RBI (8/19), a span of 12 games for Giambi. The aging slugger is just batting .067 (1/15) so far in September, as his average has dropped each month since June. If he is serious about trying to play again in 2014, he is as delusional as his average is low.
Play-Off News: The Red Sox clinched the East last night and are close to locking up home field advantage through out the play-offs. This is important for the Indians as they would be the team the Tribe would face if they are able to get into and win the single game Wild Card play-off.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 4 – Houston Astros 0