That series that we won’t talk about.
As mentioned, this is the first time the Indians will face the Yankees since the 2017 playoffs. It stunk. After an emotional win in the extra inning thriller in Game 2, the Indians were never able to bounce back. The Yankees went on to win that series 3-2 and ended a magical season for the Tribe. Indians fans and writers don’t want to think about it or talk about it. But you can bet it’s on every player in that clubhouse’s collective minds.
Theres a serious problem with the Indians bullpen.
I wrote about this earlier in the week but it is worth mentioning here. The Indians bullpen is a mess right now. Cody Allen is working long innings and Nick Goody is hurt and has been moved to the 10-day DL.
Zach McAllister is still dealing with inconsistencies and Andrew Miller may not be back until Sunday at the very least. The Tribe bullpen was used substantially in yesterday’s doubleheader against Toronto, and they actually lost the first game for Cleveland. The ‘pen is no longer a strength at the moment for this team, and that can be scary when facing the Yankees.
Worst/Best case scenario
Worse case: 0-3 series loss- I won’t sugar coat it, the Yankees are a much more complete team than the Indians are right now. That could change as the season progresses, but for now that the reality of it; and the reality is that the Yankees can sweep the Tribe with how bad Cleveland’s bullpen has been. Tomlin is starting on Friday and that gives fans the feeling that a loss is inevitable. Do I think the Indians will be swept? No. But it is a possibility.
Best case: 2-1 series win- Games two and three of this series could really go either way. The way these teams are hitting they might be thrillers. With Josh Tomlin starting on Friday it’s hard to see the Indians taking that one unless he miraculously comes around, but I’m not holding my breath. That said, Bauer and Clevinger can easily out-pitch their competition in the following two games.