Cleveland Indians Shutout in Twinbill; Is This Rock Bottom?


Is this real life? Indians shutout twice in one day

When things aren’t going well, having to play one of the hottest team in a doubleheader at their place isn’t likely to end well. For the Cleveland Indians, that was absolutely the case. Ubaldo Jimenez absolutely dominated the Tribe in game one for the Baltimore Orioles, holding his former team to just four hits in eight innings while striking out seven. 

Game two saw the Indians Toru Murata make his Major League debut. No doubt he would like to have that one back as it won’t be filed under “memorable”, at least in the good sense. He allowed five runs, although just three were earned in 3 1/3 innings. But two home runs allowed were his downfall as the Orioles rolled to an 8-o win in the nightcap, sending the Tribe to their third-straight loss and just one game away from joining the Chicago White Sox for last place again.

Are they hitting the bottom at the end of June? Is up the only way to go?

The Indians stable of quality starters isn’t going to do them much good if the can’t score runs. Corey Kluber has unfortunately become the poster child for that with the worst run support in the league of qualified starters.

The discussion of finding a fifth starter that sticks is the least of the Indians worries. They need to figure out a way to build things on the offensive side. At this rate, a good draft pick is forthcoming. But that’s a slow way to go. The ideal plan would be to identify the four or five “keepers” to build around and start looking to deal. Yes, they’re likely stuck with Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn. Hope for the best in those two and maybe someone will decide they can be helpful in a stretch run, try to shed some of that payroll.

More from Away Back Gone

The farm system isn’t without some promise, as in recent years their draft record is improving. But it’s not very deep. It’s time to start building. Acquire mid-level prospects with potential. Safety in numbers. Something has to change for the Indians because the current template isn’t going to work.

It’s a pitcher’s game these days, and while the Indians have some good ones of their own, the rest of the league has hitters to combat it. The Tribe doesn’t right now. And the only good thing is that while only a game ahead of the White Sox, Chicago isn’t far from a dismantling of the offseason build that didn’t work. That may keep the Indians from “rock bottom”, but this is close enough.

Next: Minor League All-Star Game Update