Indians 5, Royals 4 (box)
In what was the first game of an 11-game road trip, there really could not have been a better opponent for the Tribe – coming off of a streak that saw them lose eight of their previous 10 games. The Royals, since being no-hit by the Red Sox, had dropped 11 straight and appeared to be falling apart at the seams.
And then Grady Sizemore happened. Though not exactly putting up Grady-like numbers so far this season, Sizemore came up huge on both sides of the game. Grady went 2-for-4 at the plate with two home runs, a walk and three RBI. He then made one of the better plays I’ve seen in a while in center, saving Joe Borowski from a potential blown save to end the game.
This game was very “Bizzaro” Indians in that things didn’t exactly go how they have been over the last three weeks or so.
We left fewer men on base then the competition. The bullpen accounted for two holds; one by Rafy Perez, the other by Rafy Betancourt (despite leaving a man on second for Perez). And wouldn’t you know it, and run-less save by Joe Borowski (also, allowing a man to reach second).
The defense was absolutely huge in this one. Franklin Gutierrez’s diving catch in right saved a run. Ben Francisco’s head’s up play in left to get the out at second before Joey Gathwright crossed the plate was equally as big given the time in the game. And despite Casey Blake’s bonehead error at first in which he dropped a little league-like pop up, he and Asdrubal Cabrera looked pretty good on the right side of the field.
Another win for Cliff Lee, although it wasn’t as dominant as those earlier on in the season. At least the bats came up big this time around. Well done. Now let’s get another one.
I leave you with the video of Sizemore’s grab in the ninth. Do enjoy.