Lindor helps lead Indians back to .500
The Cleveland Indians keep pressing in the Wild Card race, and if things keep going the way they are they may be chasing the Houston Astros instead of the Minnesota Twins. Houston’s fall from grace continues while the Twins and Indians continue to play solid ball in September. The Tribe remains four back for the second Wild Card with a WCE# (Wild Card Elimination #) of 14. They’re doing all the can as they’ve reached .500 at 72-72–they hadn’t been .500 before this week since they were 2-2.
One of the biggest surprises continues to be the play of who I believe to be the AL Rookie of the Year–Francisco Lindor. He added to that tonight with three more hits including his ninth home run of the season while also driving in four runs. He leads all rookies in batting average with a .317–not to mention he plays a pretty good shortstop.
Once considered to be the likely runner-up to the Astros Carlos Correia, Frankie is starting to look like the leader with his continued surge. He carries a 3.5 WAR and has helped jumpstart and Indians team that looked dead in the water at the All-Star break.
Tonight’s 5-1 win assures the Tribe a split of this series with the Royals and is a glimpse of two teams that seem to be trending in opposite directions. The Royals have now dropped nine of their last 12. The Indians are 8-5 in their last 13 games and continue to stay alive in the Wild Card race.
They’ll have Corey Kluber back tomorrow as he’ll close out the four-game series against the Royals. It’ll be his first start since Aug. 29 as he recovers from a strained hamstring.
Sadly though, for a game between an Indians team battling for a playoff spot and a first place team–the attendance was dreadful. Tonight’s game drew only 11,103 to Progressive Field. The Tribe continues to be one of the worst draws in the league, trailing only the Rays in overall attendance.