Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Ground Ball Machine

Looks like Fausto Carmona picked up where he left off last year. This kid is a stud. Seemingly everytime he put a guy on base, his best friend, the double play ball, would make an appearance. He got three in the first four innings to help the Tribe move to 2-0 with a 7-2 win. Fausto went seven, allowing just one run on four hits. "Fausto threw a strong game for us," said manager Eric Wedge. "He was in control throughout." It is so nice to be able to send out a sinker-balling witch like Fausto every fifth day right after the reigning Cy Young Award winner C.C. Sabathia.

Offensively, the top of the order was all the Indians needed. Memo to Wedge: Put Asdrubal Cabrera in the two hole and leave him there. He was there last night after hitting 7th on opening day against lefty Mark Buehrle. The kid responded with three hits and two clutch RBI. There is no reason to be fooling around with Jason Michaels or David Dellucci there. AC knows how to handle the bat.

How about Grady? We smell a big season coming from #24. He was the pace-setter and the difference maker last night, going 3-5 with three RBI, all three coming with two out. "Grady had a big night," said Wedge. "He got us started with that hit with the bases loaded."

It was freezing down at the Jake (sorry, we won't call it the Prog) last night, but the Tribe bats stayed warm. We will say this: If the Indians put up offense the way they have in the first two games against two quality starting pitchers (Buehrle and Javier Vazquez), with their pitching, there is no telling how great they can be this season.

On the downside, David Dellucci. Can we end this already? he is the new Casey Blake. Last night he was 0-2 with two walks. Not so bad, right? What about when he swung at the first pitch and weakly grounded out to second with the bases loaded, two out, and the previous hitter, Franklin Gutierrez walked. Lame. Just like the rest of his game.

Good to see Masa Kobayashi's debut. We love the crazy windup. We didn't love his spotty control, but it was cold and his first major league game, so he gets a pass. Jorge Julio came in to close things out and gave up two hits and a run in the ninth.

We will be down at the Jake today for more Tribe action.

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