Second Thoughts: Game#93 - Indians 2, Orioles 10
July 21, 2012
Hello, this is your friendly neighborhood transactions marmot filling in for tonight's Second Thoughts. I had hoped to write something as witty as my weekly Transactions Rundowns, but this game was not exactly ripe for comedic material.
Where to start, how about...
While Derek Lowe has had some rough starts as of late, this was his worst outing since Memorial Day weekend at Comiskey Park (or whatever they're calling that place now). While a quick peek at the linescore would seem to indicate that it was smooth sailing for Lowe until a sudden third inning implosion, the truth is that the damage was contained in the first two innings by the seven men behind him. The third inning took barely more pitches (27) than the first two each (25 and 20 respectively), so something was clearly not right from the get-go with Lowe tonight. One final deceiving stat on the Lowe line is the hits total. While seven hits may seem indicative of a merely bad performance rather than a meltdown, those hits were paired with five walks and a run-scoring wild pitch. By the way, speaking of...
While you would never think it from the final score, the defense was solid much of the night and occasionally spectacular. The most notable entry in the spectacular category is obviously Johnny Damon's flying leap into the Lower Reserved seats in the left field corner, although Hannahan's play in the next at-bat to initiate the mercifully inning-ending ground out of J.J. Hardy was almost equally spectacular. Even when not making highlight-reel plays, the defense was adequate or better (no errors) for the vast majority of the night. The lone head scatcher of the night was Asdrubal Cabrera's decision to throw home on Matt Wieters grounder to short. It was puzzling, as Thome was a virtual lock to score, and the second out could have been a turning point in the Tribe's favor in what turned out to be a rough (to put it charitably) inning. All this talk about last night is getting depressing. Since this is Indians Prospect Insider, let's look at this one from...
THE PROSPECT ANGLE
Last night's baseball contest represented thje Major League debut of right-hander Cody Allen. As regular readers of this site are likely well aware, the story of Cody Allen's 2012 has been one of a meteoric rise from High-A Carolina to AAA Columbus and, now, the Big Club at the Corner of Carnegie and Ontario. The sheer rapidity of his ascent through the Indians farm system is probably best appreciated in convenient list form:
RHP Cody Allen assigned to Akron Aeros
RHP Cody Allen assigned to Columbus Clippers
RHP Cody Allen called up to Cleveland Indians
On to his performance tonight. While critics may point to his two walks upon entering the game as proof of his lack of readiness for this level, I prefer to look at the three-up, three-down that followed as a truer sense of his Major League potential. The one universal truth of Major League debuts is a small army of butterflies in the rook's stomach. This pressure is only intensified when said debut is made on the cetnrally-located island that is the pitcher's mound. Not throwing the ball into the Diamond Boxes in the first couple of plate appearances is a reasonable success in such a circumstance.
I really don't have much to say about the hitting (really was moot after the top of the third) or the bullpen veterans (good job of minimizing the embarrasment of the final scoreline in an otherwise lost cause), so I'll leave you with this bit of advice for those going to the park tonight: With tonight's fireworks show being the encore of the 2012 edition of Rock 'N Blast, try to get a seat outside of the zone cleared for the fireworks. Unlike the standard shows, the on-field and jumbotron elements are half of the show in Rock 'N Blast.
Oh, and look for the new Transaction Rundown (complete with Roster Hole status update)...