Did I say the Indians were going to sweep or take 3 of 4 from the Red Sox over the weekend? No… No I didn’t. You must have me mistaken with someone else who assumed the Indians would stroll on into Fenway Park against a struggling Red Sox team and beat them up and down Yawkey Way. I wouldn’t be dumb enough to so blatantly tick off the baseball gods like that, ultimately resulting in an embarrassing three game slide after taking the opener.
OK, you got me. I did it. Would I do it again? Damn straight I would.
I realize that by saying the things I said the baseball gods had no choice but to layeth the smacketh down on the Indians. The one bright spot however was allowing the Indians to be the team to thoroughly drill Josh Beckett. The end result was him walking off of the mound to a chorus of boos, ultimately heading to the dugout to drown his sorrows in some KFC and Pabst Blue Ribbon before hitting a quick nine.
But in all seriousness, how was I to know that the Red Sox lineup would finally break out of their slump and look like the Red Sox of old. There had been little to no evidence as of late that they were capable of the offensive production they generated in their drubbing of the Tribe. As a result, the Indians now limp into Minnesota having lost 5 of their last 8 and looking for answers to a number of questions.
In no particular order those questions would be… or should be:
- What is going on with Johnny Damon and the lead-off spot? Has his poor performance warranted a permanent position at the top of the lineup? Why? (Looks like it’s being rectified. Choo will lead off tonight)
- What’s going on with Justin Masterson? He looks good, he looks bad. He looks good, he looks bad. He’s become a human yo-yo.
- Dan Wheeler is gone… thank God… now who replaces him?
Frank Hermann seems most likely for the time beingTurns out Jeremey Acardo is getting the nod, but what about Matt LaPorta or Ezequiel Carrera?
- Where is the offense? Why is there no consistency? It’s either boom or bust with them.
- What’s going on with Sanatana and Hafner? Neither is having what you would call a very good month of May at the plate.
- Shelley Duncan… Where are you? (Apparently batting ninth tonight)
- Why did we demote Jason Donald for… Jose Lopez?
Believe me, I had high hopes for the Indians in 2012. I really did. Unfortunately, given the offseason move they made, or rather the lack there of, I knew they were going to struggle. I just didn’t want to admit it to myself. They failed to get a quality middle of the order bat and as a result the lineup has sputtered along at a mediocre pace. If they don;t change something… anything… in the not so distant future, we might be looking at the same slow painful death to the season that we saw in 2011.
Why not give LaPorta a shot? Why not call up Carrera to be the lead off hitter for a week or two? What could either of those two moves cost us in the long run, especially now that there is a roster sport open thanks to the exiling of Dan Wheeler. It’s this type of risk the Indians need to take if they want to jump-start this lineup, catch lightning in a bottle, and regain control of the division before it’s too late.