Name: Cleveland Indians 2017 Season
Age: 167 Games
Time of Death: October 11, 2017; 11:47 p.m. EST
Cause of Death: Offensive Failure and Asphyxiation (Choked on a 2-0 ALDS lead)
Analysis: Patient appeared to be in fine, dare I say robust health just a week ago. Patient developed a mild case of New York Yankees with expectation of recovery and advancement. He was admitted on October 5. Conditions worsened in the past week, specifically the final three games. Professionals initially suspected a false positive because on Day 1 Trevor Bauer appeared healthy, operating at peak capacity. The Jay Bruce Transplant functioned as intended, and the normally superfluous Roberto Perez yielded great results.
The patient began to show signs of duress on Day 2. Corey Kluber could not keep anything down leading to bouts of vomiting. Experts suspected that the implement had somehow been compromised, but this was unconfirmed. The situation worsened when the Edwin Encarnacion gland suffered a trauma and had to be shut down. However, the patient received an injection of Francisco Lindor power and a dram of Jay Bruce which appeared to improve its condition. The night was long as the patient developed an intense fever that lasted for thirteen innings. Every time it appeared ready to spike, a bolus from Yan Gomes or Joe Smith was able to drop the temperature. Ultimately it was the same proactive application of Gomes that broke the fever and allowed the patient to rest, confident that he would be able to leave the following day.
Day 3 started as well as could be expected. The patient appeared in good spirits, laughing and confident that he would be able to move on before the day was over. In the seventh inning, during what was normally a dull Andrew Miller procedure, his nose began to spontaneously bleed in the form of a Greg Bird home run to right. It was quickly wiped up, and the patient attempted to laugh it off saying these sorts of things happen all the time and there was no need to worry. Some of the older physicians who saw this were troubled, and advised the patient to stay one more night. Disappointed but undeterred, the patient relented.
Day 4 brought a sharp decline in the patient’s condition. Early in the morning, Giovanni Urshella could not handle a line drive which caused a sharp fever. Later, a throwing error initiated fierce headaches and nausea. Aaron Judge’s two-run double led to chest pain. Doctors were attempting to use the same Bauer that yielded great results upon arrival, but it showed no potency here. The disease had built up immunity. The body attempted to fight back, bravely using Carlos Santana and Roberto Perez to hit home runs, but the day was lost. A brutal day ended with concern; the doctors knew there was no guarantee the patient would be able to survive another day.
Day 5 was a struggle from the onset. As the patient awoke it seemed for a few moments that he was in decent shape. During an initial vitals check, the providers found a violent rash they identified as “Didi Gregorious.” It was a new irritant and another addition to the patient’s long list of symptoms. Again the doctors tried to boost the patient’s offense, to awaken the dormant immune system. It was all to no avail. In the third inning the Gregorious spread, tripling in size.
A breakthrough appeared in the fifth when an unorthodox elixir or Roberto Perez and Giovanni Urshella seemed to briefly stabilize the patient. Late into the night, doctors prepared one final dosage of power; they believed the disease could be beaten or at least the status prolonged. Then, without warning, the patient seized. He violently thrashed on the bed, convulsing as two more runs scored. It was too late now; the disease had spread too far. The lungs and heart were compromised. A small vigil ensued in which the loved ones and next of kin said their thanks and goodbyes. With Austin Jackson frozen at the plate, the patient passed.
I’ve been asked to write an addendum detailing what can be done for future patients to prevent such a collapse. There is no guarantee that regular season health will continue once a patient reaches the postseason. In fact, the morgue is littered with the deceased who led the league in wins, but failed to claim the top prize. Much can, and perhaps should, be made of the pharmaceutical roster. Some therapy choices seemed less than effective (Gio) while others that worked during the course of the patient’s life stopped for seemingly no reason. Lindor (2-for-18) and Jose Ramirez (2-for-20), usually reliable options, offered no relief this week. The attending physician, Tito Francona, also made some interesting choices in his order of pitching treatment. It is not clear if a regiment of Corey Kluber-Carlos Carassco-Trevor Bauer-Josh Tomlin-Corey Kluber would have made for a better disease combatant. We may never know.
Many of these medications and implements will be recycled to future patients, but several will fall out of favor. The next patient will be related to this one, but may not bear as much physical resemblance or enjoy as robust a life. Still, conditions should foster another healthy season, though perhaps not as tall as its big brother. In this hour of sadness I encourage the next of kin to not dwell on the patient’s final few days but instead celebrate his life; one lived to the fullest with comeback wins, walkoff victories, and a 22-game win streak. Time shall heal this wound as it does all. Take the time to mourn, but also take heart: the 2018 season will be born in 125 days.