Cleveland Indians: 3 takeaways from 3-1 loss in Houston

(Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
(Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /

The Cleveland Indians fell to the Astros Sunday by a final of 3-1.  It was full of tremendous starting pitching and some choice broadcasting by the Sunday Night Baseball crew.

That should give you a pretty good idea about the level of excitement of this game. The Astros Lance McCullers threw five perfect innings before Jason Kipnis ended his bid with a single to start off the sixth inning, but the Tribe still couldn’t score until the top of the ninth.

Carlos Carrasco helped keep the game dull and scoreless for six and a third innings before Brian McCann launched one off of him for a two-run homer.

Even Cleveland’s lone run of the game was boring. Edwin Encarnacion grounded out to third for the second out in the ninth, and Houston conceded a run as Michael Brantley came in from third.

Bauer showing off

With his good friend Lance McCullers getting the start for Houston, Trevor (Tyler?) Bauer must have felt he needed to show off for his new friend and the fans he made in Houston.

Let’s break down this catch.

First of all, there’s the obvious. He catches the ball behind his back by hooking his hand and making the no look snag. Ridiculous.

But the fact that he’s backpedaling to track down the ball makes the catch. It’s tough enough to stand there and attempt that kind of grab but to track it down like that adds an entire other level of difficulty.

The outfield has been going through some wear and tear. With Chisenhall, Naquin, and Zimmer all suffering injuries, might we see Bauer in the outfield?

Melky’s first start

Sunday’s game marked Melky Cabrera‘s first start in a Cleveland Indians uniform and he almost left as much to be desired as he did runners on base.

He went 0-3 at the plate with a strikeout and stranded two runners, one in scoring position. To be fair, it wasn’t as if the rest of the offense was on fire.

The team only managed three hits and got on base just five times. The Melky experiment is an interesting one and might not last long, with Chisenhall, Naquin, and Zimmer all set to return soon.

If he wants to carve out a role in the crowded Indians outfield, Cabrera will need to show out, and do it soon before it’s too late.

The bullpen wasn’t terrible

For once, it wasn’t the bullpen’s fault that the Indians lost this game. Tyler Olson gave up the hit that scored Houston’s third run but the run was given to Carrasco.

Other than that, Cody Allen got one out without giving up a run. So yes, the bullpen saw hardly any action (just two batters). But with how bad they have been this season, it’s worth noting any semblance of success they may have.

But this loss shouldn’t fall on Carrasco’s shoulders. Houston’s offense is extremely talented and holding them scoreless for six innings and surrendering just three runs should be good enough.

The offense just let them down Sunday.

The win clinched the series for the Astros, but the Cleveland Indians have the chance to bounce back as they take on the Cubs in Wrigley for a two game series starting Tuesday.

Next: 5 best first round draft picks in club history

Their next shot at the Astros isn’t far off either as they return to Cleveland Thursday for another three game series against Houston.