Indians

Pitcher Review: Indians Squeak by Rangers

Pitcher reviews are my game stories following a pitcher preview published the preceding day. These will include analysis of the matchups I highlighted as well as a few quick thoughts from the nights game.

The Cleveland Indians rode a strong start from Carlos Carrasco and a solid offensive night to a victory on Tuesday. Carlos Santana started the night off with a home run, and the Tribe stayed ahead the whole night. The 4-3 win over the defending AL West champion Texas Rangers has given the Indians a 2-0 start their season with Cody Allen striking out the side in the ninth of both contests.

On Tuesday afternoon, I published a pitcher preview article detailing the Indians matchup with Ranger southpaw Martin Perez. The purpose was to highlight a handful of pitcher versus hitter matchups, which should be favorable (in this case) for the Indians offense. Β There was one over-arching premise: The Indians must lay off changeups in the low-outside quadrant.

Based on Perez peppering sinkers to the low-outside quadrant to right-handed hitters, I selected two Indians who could punish the pitch: Brandon Guyer and Edwin Encarnacion.

First, a review of Encarnacion’s evening.

Brooks Baseball

Outcome:Β 

PA No. 1: Perez won the first plate appearance battle against Encarnacion by not using his sinker on the lower half. Instead relying on fastball and changeup combinations at the top of the zone.

PA No. 2: Perez dodges the nitro zone and walks Encarnacion.

PA No. 3: Perez induces a pop-up from Encarnacion on a slider.

Brandon Guyer’s chart against the same offering.

Courtesy of Brooks Baseball

Outcome:

PA No. 1: Guyer wins by barreling a sinker on the outer third.

PA No. 2: Guyer crushes sinker outer third to the track in center field for a long out.

PA No. 3: Guyer hits hard ground ball on a low sinker, ruled E-5.

Finally, Perez leverages his slider inside to right-handed hitters often burying towards the back foot. The hitters job is to sit and see if they can punish a flat one. Austin Jackson entered the game having had success doing so throughout his career.

Courtesy of Brooks Baseball

Outcome:

PA No. 1: Single, hammered a fastball down the middle for a base hit and an RBI.

PA No. 2: Jackson lined out on a sinker over the middle of the plate.

Final thoughts:

  1. Brandon Guyer made two outstanding plays in right field. First, an efficient route finished by a diving catch. Second, Guyer gunned down Mazara attempting to stretch a long single into a double.
  2. Carlos Carrasco performed very well considering how frustrated he appeared leaving spring training. Carrasco who was shut down for roughly a week and had a limited spring flashed his elite stuff and dominated a Texas lineup over 5 2/3 IP. Β Carrasco used just 80 pitches to strike out seven hitters and walk. The only blemish being a Joey Gallo moonshot. For Indians fans, Carrasco flashing his elite upside on a pitch limit is the best they could ask for.
  3. Carlos Santana continues to be an offensive anchor for this team, beginning his season reaching base in five of his first nine plate appearances with two doubles and a home run.
  4. Cody Allen has six strikeouts in two innings pitched for 2017.

  • mgbode

    Great stuff Mike.

  • Hopwin

    Didn’t Cody give up back to back doubles and a run before striking out the side? Not saying Cody sucks, but it feels disingenuous not to mention it.

    I am a little concerned with how aggressive we are on the bases currently. Hopefully we tone it back a bit or stop sliding over the bags πŸ˜‰

  • mgbode

    Allen did but I believe 6 Ks in 2 IP is more noteworthy.

    I agree, these guys need to hang onto those bags (otherwise they would have both been safe).

  • WFNY_DP

    Am I crazy, or is it a fair comparison that every time I see Joey Gallo I think “there goes the next Russell Branyan.” Dude will hit just enough majestic bombs to keep teams interested… while striking out every other PA.

  • Natedawg86

    C is for Cookie, that’s good enough for me

  • jpftribe

    The Lindor review and call was ridiculous. One video frame, 1/30th of second shows a half inch space between his hand and foot.

  • jpftribe

    Good stuff Mike. He made Lindor look silly chasing the slider down and away, and I think that’s what he got Ramirez on the GIDP. That was a game changer.

    Cookie and Allen were really fun to watch last night. The Odor AB’s were just fantastic baseball. Really coulda went either way, which makes it extra sweet when it goes yours.

    A quality start out of Salazar tonight would be a fantastic beginning.

  • Harv

    same. Potential for a peripatetic career always jumping to the next org desperate enough for power that they fantasize that they can tweak his approach and lower the SO ratio from 1/3 to 1/4.

  • jpftribe

    Be interesting to see what they do with him when Beltre is back. Body-wise, he looks more like a 1B than 3B.

  • scripty

    I think of Jerry Gallo/Callo from My Cousin Vinny

  • chrisdottcomm

    Jerry Gallo?
    Gallo with a G?

    …Jerry Gallo’s dead!

  • chrisdottcomm

    great minds.

  • Hopwin

    In real time wife and I both thought he was out…

  • Hopwin

    So if he had given up 4 homeruns then struck out the next 3 your headline would still be 6ks in 2 IP?

  • jpftribe

    If the tag beats him, fine. If he overslides the bag, fine. But measuring the milliseconds it takes to transition from finger to toe is really a bit much.

    I had no issue with the Jose call. He clearly over-slid the bag.

  • Hopwin

    Haha I actually felt like their 3b pushed him off the bag! But I am in my own little world of observations πŸ™‚

  • Harv

    Me like this angle-specific game story approach. Can’t get this elsewhere. A few random:

    – If Jackson stays healthy through platooning, what a nice, Rajai-like addition.

    – Someone quick, tell Yandy: stop eyeballing the ump. Question nothing until your bona fides are established. He was here before you and he’ll be here after you. Eat the bad call. Earn his respect, and you’ll get it … next year.

    – Yan needed that long foul to go fair to lift his spirits. Dude looks like he’s lugging 2 years of bad juju into the batter’s box, just waiting for a frig o fall on his head.

    – Brantley hasn’t forgotten a thing. Love that he isn’t trying to go yard, yet.

    – With the game on the line right now I trust Carlos for a quality at-bat more than anyone. Even if he whiffs, seems like a font of knowledge about what’s coming and what he might do with it. And speaking of battle-hardened, Cody Allen suddenly looks pretty impervious to nerves. Like what Paul Shuey could have been with a bigger heart.

  • jpftribe

    He definitely kept him from coming back, but Ramirez has to hold the bag there, and he doesn’t mainly because he shouldn’t have been trying to take the base was my read.

  • jpftribe

    Well, technically the game would have been over after 2 runs, so he wouldn’t have gotten 3 more K’s. πŸ™‚

  • jpftribe

    I really like the Allen = MadDog Shuey comparison. He sure seems like a different guy in April 17 than he was in April 16.

  • Hopwin

    Ditto, that was an unnecessary push and dude just came in way too fast.

  • Hopwin
  • Hopwin

    Haha I always felt like Bob Wickman was the coolest character on the mound.

    “Oh you got on base? Whatever, just go around to third, meantime I gotta get these next two guys out so I can go get a hoagie.”

    http://www.mysticgames.com/famouspeople/pictures/BobWickman.jpg

  • Mike Hattery

    Glad you like the angle.

  • Mike Hattery

    I had the exact same thought.

  • mgbode

    Oooooo, so close. The game would have been tied after two runs πŸ™‚

  • mgbode

    The headline is how the Indians hitters fared against Perez πŸ˜‰

    I left the full snark in the newest WFNY article for your reading (and viewing) pleasure though πŸ™‚

  • mgbode

    Wily Mo Pena wants recognition here too.

  • mgbode

    Cookie, cookie, cookie starts with C

  • Harv

    loved Wickie. The way he refused to give in and full body-sweated his way to walking 3 guys who refused to bite on the slider in the dirt. Pity the catcher who had to hug him after the last guy roped a screamer right at someone.

  • tsm

    Agree. They need to learn how to hold onto the base and not overslide, nor become airborne during the slide so they lose contact. This should not be that difficult to correct. In my old fashioned mind, I keep seeing feet first slides where the guy can hang onto the bag as a last resort.

  • jpftribe

    And much like the NY MLB review umps, you have overturned what was previously a good moment by being “technically correct.”

  • Harv

    I’m really torn on this one. It’s Lindor who keeps getting nailed despite his amazing in-slide dextrous attempts to maintain contact, and if it was Lindor tagging Odor I’d be all like “yeah!!” Last night’s call seemed ridic but can’t objectively believe that “spirit of the rule” trumps accuracy in a game of inches where safety isn’t at stake. I wouldn’t invoke “spirit” on a grazed hit-by-pitch, or a fair-or-foul. I think high def tv must cause a change in sliding technique.

  • WFNY_DP

    I’m not gonna lie, that crossed my mind as well.

  • WFNY_DP

    When I saw it was Gallo due up with two outs, I immediately started brushing my teeth for bed. I was about 90% sure he was going to whiff.

  • mgbode

    Well, you should learn to slide better.

  • WFNY_DP

    Manning and Underwood talked about it, but Allen pitched in the highest pressure situations possible in the fall, including 2.0 innings of nails work late in Game 7. Somehow, an April game in Texas probably doesn’t feel quite so tense anymore.

  • Steve

    Regarding Yandy, he doesn’t have the luxury of waiting around until next year. He was lucky enough that a spot opened up for him now, and he’ll get sent back down as guys get healthy.

  • Steve

    Even if it’s just because Brantley is out, good to see that Guyer batting in the top third against a LHP.

  • mgbode

    I just came in here to reply to one of your posts to write that exact same thing.

  • Harv

    You’re stating why it’s supposedly justified. I’m stating why it’s detrimental to his own cause. A veteran teammate or a coach needs to point to that out. Last thing he needs are self-inflicted wounds when an ump opens up the zone further to impress mutual respect upon a rookie.

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