"Oh, in about five, 10 minutes."
After multiple pleas of “Uncle!” from sportswriters on deadline, the four-game series with the Rangers wraps up tonight.
The average time of game for the first three was three hours, 42 minutes. Tonight, however, two aces are on the mound in the form of C.C. Sabathia and Kevin Millwood. So, the time should be more reasonable… like 3:36.
Few things in life should last 3:42. One of them is a Bruce Springsteen concert. I’ll let you come up with some others, as my brain is a bit discombobulated by the baseball marathons.
Here are tonight’s lineups. Note that Asdrubal Cabrera is absent for the Indians. Wedge has opted to give him an extra day after Cabrera strained his hip last night. But we just talked to Cabrera, he’s feeling fine, and he expects to be back in there tomorrow in Detroit.
INDIANS (27-32): CF Grady Sizemore, LF Ben Francisco, C Victor Martinez, 1B Ryan Garko, SS Jhonny Peralta, DH David Dellucci, 3B Casey Blake, RF Shin-Soo Choo, 2B Jamey Carroll. LHP Sabathia on the mound. His 2.01 ERA since April 22 is the best in the AL.
RANGERS (30-31): 2B Ian Kinsler, SS Michael Young, RF Josh Hamilton, DH Milton Bradley, LF David Murphy, CF Marlon Byrd, C Gerald Laird, 1B Chris Shelton, 3B Ramon Vazquez. RHP Millwood hurling.
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- LHP Jeremy Sowers was to have started for Buffalo on Friday. Instead, he’ll get an extended break before joining the Indians’ rotation Sunday in Detroit. Sowers’ promotion leads to a promotion for LHP David Huff (the Tribe’s first overall pick in ’06), who will be called up from Double-A Akron to start Friday’s game for the Bisons. Huff was an impressive 5-1 with a 1.92 ERA in 11 games, including 10 starts, at Akron. He led the Eastern League in ERA and was fourth in strikeouts (62).
- Interesting, in light of Asdrubal Cabrera’s injury last night, that 2B Josh Barfield didn’t start at Buffalo today for just the second time this season. But Buffalo manager Torey Lovullo told reporters there’s nothing going on there. Barfield has hit safely in eight of nine games (.359 in that span). But he’s struck out 47 times this season, against just 13 walks, so that’s obviously a big concern.
- The Bisons, by the way, had a crazy comeback against Rochester last night. They were down 6-0 in the ninth and rallied to tie (with the tying runs coming on Barfield’s two-out, two-run single) and 7-6 in the 10th but pulled out a pair in the bottom of the inning to win it on Brad Snyder’s RBI single.
- LHP John Halama was signed to a Minor League contract and will report to Buffalo. Halama was 4-1 with a 1.91 ERA in eight starts for Southern Maryland of the Atlantic League. Halama last appeared in the Majors in 2006 with Baltimore. He was 56-48 with a 4.65 ERA in 262 big-league appearances with a host of teams.
- According to Elias, Ben Francisco, who had five hits last night, became just the fourth Indians rookie since 1948 to notch five or more hits in a game. Tommy Hinzo was the last to have five, on Sept. 5, 1987. Jack Heidemann had six on June 28, 1970, and Jim Fridley had six on April 29, 1952.
- More on Francisco… he leads all AL rookies in average (.343), is tied for sixth in homers (3) and tied for seventh in RBIs (17), even though he’s only played in 29 games. He has hit safely in 12 of 14 games.
- The Indians have three straight 15-hit games for the first time since April 9-11, 1999, at Minnesota.
- The Indians have already used 35 players thi syear. Last year, they used 41 in the entire season.