The Cleveland Indians season hasn’t gotten off to the start they had hoped. The starting pitching, even Justin Masterson, hasn’t been great. The hitting has been hit or miss, pun intended. And now the new closer, John Axford, became Chris Perez and blew a save. Obviously all of those things can change, multiple times, in a long season. The young starting pitching can come into their own. The batters can start to find their stride, especially with the return of Michael Bourn, and Axford is bound to blow a couple saves, most good/great closers do.
Tonight, however, starts games that are vitally important, as the Cleveland Indians take on the rival Detroit Tigers in that state up north. The first game of the series was “colded out” with the terrible winter storm that hit the area, in the midst of Spring. That leaves just a 2 game set as these teams get their first crack at each other.
Last season the Tigers’ built their division win on the amazing 15-4 record against the Tribe. The Indians can’t let any opportunities against this team slip through their grasps. Each game needs to be seen with the extra importance it plays in each teams’ records. Even a .500 record against the Tigers last year would of won the Indians the Division by 4 games. Instead they lost the Division by 1 game and then lost the 1 game “playoff” game against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Tonight Zach McAllister goes up against 2013 ERA Champ Anibal Sanchez. McAllister is 1-0 on the season with a sparkling 2.31 ERA. Sanchez has pitched well also but has no record to go along with his 3.00 ERA. The Tigers lead the Division and are up on the Tribe by 1.5 games but have played 3 less games so far in this short season.
Do you think the Tribe should give extra attention to Tigers games? Or do you think it over values the Division rivals and causes pressure? What is your hope for this short series?