I don’t want to live in a world where Wily Mo Pena is playing the role of hero. Seriously, Wily Mo Pena. When was the last time he was relevant? Probably sometime in 2007 with the Red Sox. Up until this week he hadn’t played in a major league game in close to three years. Ridiculous… absolutely ridiculous.
Meanwhile, my man crush on Carlos Santana is alive and well. I will admit, it’s kinda, sorta, almost burned out given his struggles this season, but given the recent tear he’s been on it’s seen a bit of a rekindling. Last night’s game tying, two run, nuclear bomb to right in the top of the 9th threw a gas can onto the fire (seriously, that thing was crushed. I think the ball is still travling). Dare I say it… is Carlos Sanatana back? Over the last 30 days Santana has only batted .247. I know, that’s not great, but in that same period of time he has 5 home runs, 13 RBI, 15 runs scored, and surprisingly 2 stolen bases. That people is production. Sure, you’d like to see the average a bit higher, but he is more than carrying his own weight.
In all honesty, the Indians need Santana to come through given recent developments. Choo is done for the season or close to it by all accounts. Travis Hafner has been relegated to pinch-hitting duty thanks to National League rules. Matt LaPorta is still hurt. Grady Sizemore… yeah, I don’t know what’s going on with Grady Sizemore right now. Dude needs to get his head right. That’s a lot of run production in the middle of the lineup that’s missing at this current juncture.
Speaking of LaPorta, he is expected to be with the Tribe this weekend in Cincinnati and should begin taking batting practice. He’s been on the disabled list with that bum ankle since June 18th and according to the Indians it is healing as expected. Even though he’ll be in Cincinnati for this weekend’s “Battle of Ohio: Part Deux” LaPorta isn’t eligible to come off of the disable list until July 5th. It’ll be interesting to see what move the Indians make in order to make room for him on the roster. The most likely candidates to get sent packing are Shelley Duncan or Travis Buck. However, the player who should be shown the door is Austin Kearns. He’s been useless this year and has done nothing to show he deserves to be on the big league team other than sign a guaranteed major league contract. Ultimately it means that Kearns and his god awful .194 batting average will remain ion the bench.
Please excuse me while I bash my head against the walls of my cubicle…
Ok, moving on…
The Indians take on the Diamondbacks in the rubber match today at 3:40. I think it’s essential that they win this series and build a bit of confidence. It feels like they have either been swept or lost every series they’ve played over the course of the last month and a half, with the exception of the Pirates. They could also use some momentum before they head to Cincinnati to take on the Reds. The Reds are playing some really good baseball right now and are a lot better team than the one the Indians swept back in May. Here’s hoping Carlos Carrasco can keep his hot streak going and throw up some more shutout innings.