The Cleveland Indians 3rd game with the Los Angles Angels was rained out last night. While the clubs will have to figure out a day to make it up, for the Indians this provides some bullpen relief 2 days before a huge 3 game series with the Detroit Tigers in the #WarForTheDivision. Interestingly enough neither the Tigers or the Indians are in first place in the division, that resides with the Kansas City Royals.
Yet for the Indians this rainout came at a very good time. Currently the Tribe has 3 bullpen members among those ranked in the Top 6 of appearances by pitchers in the American league. The Indians are led in appearances by Marc Rzepczynski who has appeared in 36 games, tied for most in the AL. As a specialist he has only thrown 25.1 innings during those outings but that still can take a toll on an arm. Bryan Shaw is tied for 3rd in the AL with 35 appearances which includes 34 innings pitched, almost a 1 for 1 ratio. Closer Cody Allen, who took on that role later in the season, is next with 34 appearances and 30 innings pitched.
The Indians could be catching the Tigers at the good time as the team has struggled as of late, including losing the first 3 against the Royals. The Tribe will need all hands on deck for that series. “Ace” Justin Masterson goes in the series finale with the Angels tomorrow and could provide a huge boost by going deep into the game.
Unfortunately not all the news is good for the Indians as Michael Brantley, Dr. Smooth, has been diagnosed with a concussion and won’t be available until Saturday at the earliest. That could mean Brantley being back by the second game of the series with the Tigers but nothing is for sure with concussions.
The Tribe have dug themselves a hole earlier in the year and haven’t gotten out of if all the way yet. The next 4 games could have a huge impact on the rest of the season.
What are your thoughts on the bullpen and on Brantley?