Tribe Bullpen Upset, Being Outsourced is “Not Fair”

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Aug 24, 2014; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians relief pitcher Scott Atchison (48) pitches during the seventh inning against the Houston Astros at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Relief Corps Growing Bored Due to Lack of Playing Time

Being outsourced has never been much of a problem for the members of the Tribe bullpen.  Through most of this year, they’ve been getting a lot of work, pitching more innings than most other teams in the major leagues.  Bryan Shaw, Cody Allen and Marc Rzepczynski are all among the league leaders in innings pitched and appearances for relievers, and work was abundant for the bullpen staff in general.

But then something went horribly wrong.  Over the past nine games, Indians starters have been stealing playing time from the bullpen.  In fact, in seven of those games, a Tribe starter has gone at least seven innings.  In five of those games, the starting pitcher has pitched at least eight innings.

“It’s not fair,” said right-hander C.C. Lee through a translator.  He hasn’t been on the mound for a week.  “My friends and family all want to see me pitch, but I’ve essentially been paid to be a cheerleader for the past seven days.

“Tito gives me a lollipop every time I get a lefty out,” said lefty Nick Hagadone, who has faced 3 batters since September 2nd.  “I’m legitimately concerned I may develop hypoglycemia soon.”

It’s no surprise that the relievers are upset.  During the past nine games, the rotation has averaged about 7 1/3 innings pitched per start, leaving little opportunity for relievers other than Shaw and Allen to step onto the field.  Lately, some members of the Tribe bullpen have been seen doing crosswords, knitting, and even taking to the arts.

“I created an exact replica of the Colossus of Rhodes,” said youngster Kyle Crockett.  “I even had time to fly out and see the exhibit once or twice.  My free time lately has given me the chance to explore my creative impulses.”

MLBPA has expressed their concern for the relief pitchers, but says that they are unable to do anything at this time.

“The Indians’ starting rotation has just been better than anyone who created the game of baseball could have expected.  There is no sort of precedent for this situation, but we’re working diligently to make sure these hard-working relievers get to pitch again.”

Veteran Scott Atchison hopes that this bullpen’s nightmare will turn itself around soon.

“I haven’t seen anything like this since the late 40s, when pitchers were routinely pitching complete games,” he commented.  “Reminds me of when I got to see Bob Feller pitch on my 25th birthday.”

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