Thursday, August 03, 2006

This Closing Thing Looks Tough

So the Indians lost another game in the 9th inning against the Red Sox yesterday. The first loss was a blown save by Fausto Carmona; in his first save attempt of his career, he gave up a 3 run home run to David Ortiz (which prompted the Sports Guy to go off on a love fest).

Last night he effortlessly struck out the first two men he faced, then imploded. With two outs, Carmona plunked two batters on back to back pitches (the Boston fans booed, smartest fans in baseball I tell ya) and then walked the next guy on a full count. Mark Loretta proceeded to double off the Green Monster to end it.

Now, don't get me wrong, last night was depressing, but there's a bright side. Sure the Indians lost 2-3 to the Red Sox, but both losses were blown saves by a 22 year old closer (which were his first two attempts). If the Indians had a veteran closer (or at least one who isn't attempting his first two saves), they sweep the series, in Boston no less.

This team is a lot closer to contention than their record shows. The rotation is set with Sabathia, Lee, Westbrook, Byrd and Sowers. The line up is pretty good, though full of young kids. The problem all season (including last night) has been the bullpen.

And sure Carmona is learning on the job, and his first two save attempts have been rough (as was his 9th inning stint in a 3-3 tie), but his stuff is electric. If (and this is a big if) the Indians actually pay for some relievers this offseason, the team should be very competetive. They were three outs away from sweeping the Red Sox in Boston.

Update: I'm an idiot, the Tribe's playing a 4 game series with the Sox, not a three game.

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