My friends don’t dance, we just pull up our pants and do the Almonte: Tribe Notes 8/11

What’s the Damage?

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I might as well quit posting the division standings cause we have about as good a shot at catching the Royals as the “no alcohol” rule has of being obeyed in the Muni Lot this year. And obviously a seven-and-a-half game deficit in the wild card is a pretty monumental deficit to overcome, but by some act of God we’re not mathematically eliminated yet.

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The Tribe had a weird west coast trip last week that I didn’t write about because I can’t stay up for those games anymore. We split 4 games out in Oakland which could have been a series win had it not been for Cody Allen’s tenth inning on the 2nd.

Then we lost two of three in Anaheim which also could have been a series win had it not been for Cody Allen’s ninth inning on the 5th.

In the first game after returning home on Friday, Cody Anderson gave up six runs in 2.2 innings but our offense broke out in a big way, putting up 9 runs on 14 hits. We lost 10-9. 25 Indians crossed the plate on Saturday and Sunday, giving us our first series win since we went to Cincinnati  on July 17th. It was a bad couple weeks for the Cody’s and one hell of a roller coaster for fans.

But here we are, 7.5 games back in the wild card with a 5% chance of making the playoffs. In 2013, before our magical one game postseason run, our odds were as low as 10% on August 31st. If anything is possible with God on your side, having Abraham has gotta count for something. (He was good, right? My moms gonna kill me)

The Royals are in. Next.

The Twinkies continue to nosedive, as their stern talking-to in The Land over the weekend puts them below the .500 mark for the first time since MAY 1ST. Not even wearing these gross-ass batting practice jerseys in games could right the ship.

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OF Byron Buxton, aka the future of their franchise, was activated from the DL on Monday, then inexplicably sent down to AAA. And, despite all these things, Paul Molitor was named the 3rd best manager in the league by Baseball America. Yikes.

The Tigers have been treading water since trading Yoenis Cespedes and David Price before the July trade deadline, going 4-6 in their last 10. Brad Ausmus went with the old “If you can’t beat em’, call em’ cheaters!” adage after Johnny Cueto spun a complete game, 4-hit shutout against them on Monday night.

Miggy Cabrera’s final hurdle before returning to game action will be running the bases, which he’ll attempt to do on Tuesday. He’s been on the DL with a calf strain since early July.

Outfielder Trayce Thompson has three hits in seven at-bats after being called up to the black-pinstriped Chicago team last week. His brother splashes for a living.  1B Jose Abreu is the 7th rated hitter in the past 15 days in ESPN Fantasy Baseball, and I own him, so that’s cool.

In Other News

  • New Chris on the block, had a bunch of hits, Chinese food actually sounds incredible right now. After coming over in the trade that sent Michael Bourn, Nick Swisher and around $15 million American dollars to Atlanta, new guy Chris Johnson made an immediate impact, going 4-4 with two doubles on Sunday. He played first base but can also stand over at third and has played right field once in his life, so Lonnie can coach him up. The guy is actually decently useful against lefties at the plate, but any value whatsoever he brings to the table will be an upgrade from what we gave up. Swisher actually had some weirdly callous comments after being dealt, and it sounds like there were some people in the clubhouse who were as excited as we were to see him go.  I did feel a little bad about things not working out with him immediately after the deal but not anymore. Smell ya, bro.
  • Other new guy Abraham Almonte (from San Diego for LHP Marc Rzepczynski (not checking that)) has enjoyed an even more memorable Wahoo debut. Saturday: 4-5, HR, 2 2B, 2 RBI. Sunday: 1-4, HR, 2 RBI. He had five major league home runs before this weekend. You obviously can’t expect anywhere near that production going forward, but he’ll get time in the outfield as long as he hits.

  • Outfielder Clint Frazier was named the Carolina League Player of the Month for July, in which he led the league in hitting (.363) and was second in slugging (.559). For the season, the 20-year-old is slashing .286/.381/.465 with 13 bombs, 30 doubles and 60 RBI. Here’s an interesting bit from Bottlegate friend Justin Lada about how going back to using a toe tap has helped him turn his season around after some early struggles.
  • Uh, so this happened a half hour before Saturday night’s game:

That’s actually right across the street from my apartment, so I was understandably nervous when I thought City Tap was going up in flames. Thankfully it was just an apartment. Don’t know what I would have done if that bar bit the dust, nowhere else in the city you can drink while literally inside of a deep fryer.

 

KEEP THE CHIEF

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