The 2007 Indians, managed by Eric Wedge, won 96 games, tying with Boston for the best record in the American League. They beat out Detroit in the AL Central by eight games, clinching on September 23rd, their first division title since 2001.
For comparison’s sake, the 2016 Tribe won 94 games in the regular season, bested the Tigers by eight games, and clinched on September 26th. Eerie, right?
The similarities don’t end there, though, as a quick check of Cleveland’s schedule in 2007 shows utter dominance of its divisional rivals, a clear advantage playing at home, and a long run in first place. That club went 48-24 (.666) against the Central, 51-29 (.638) at Progressive Field, orchestrated 10 walk-off wins, and spent 121 days of the season atop the standings.
This year, the Indians posted a 48-26 (.649) record against divisional opponents, went 53-28 (.653) at home, walked off 11 times, and spent 122 days in first place. If you’re head is starting to spin a little, it’s okay, it’ll pass.
Furthering the similarities, the 2007 home opener, against the Seattle Mariners, was postponed due to snow, which isn’t a statistic, but should bring back memories of this past April for Tribe fans who trudged downtown only to have Mother Nature intervene.
The entire opening series, in fact, was snowed out, with the two sides playing three makeup games in one-off fashion over the course of the season, and the second home series, against the Los Angeles Angels, was relocated, bizarrely enough, to Miller Park in Milwaukee.