"It's Risk, Jerry. The game of world conquest."
An airplane towing a giant Geico flag is hovering over the ballpark as I type this.
That’s a dangerous move for Geico. Don’t they know this is Progressive territory? Perhaps this is the sign of an impending war involving car insurance companies. If that’s the case, then you’d have to imagine The General is best-equipped for battle, no?
(Side note: If you think that insurance joke was a letdown, imagine how bad you’d feel if you had made the effort to bookmark this blog on your Blackberry. It’s come to my attention that there are people out there who would do such a thing. … Well, just one person, and I’ll protect that person’s identity here, because, really, if you’re the type of person who would bookmark a site like this, you need all the anonymity you can get in life.)
Where was I? Ah, yes, the Geico flag. It’s about the only thing worth watching at Progressive Field at the moment, because the suddenly Pudge-less Tigers, for the second straight day, are blowing off batting practice. That certainly worked for Leyland and company last night, and we’ll see if it works again off Cliff Lee.
INDIANS (46-59): CF Grady Sizemore, RF Franklin Gutierrez, DH Ben Francisco, SS Jhonny Peralta, LF Shin-Soo Choo, C Kelly Shoppach, 3B Andy Marte, 1B Ryan Garko, 2B Asdrubal Cabrera. LHP Lee (14-2, 2.29).
TIGERS (54-52): CF Curtis Granderson, 2B Placido Polanco, LF Marcus Thames, RF Magglio Ordonez, 1B Miguel Cabrera, DH Gary Sheffield, SS Edgar Renteria, C Brandon Inge, 3B Ryan Raburn. LHP Nate Robertson (6-8, 5.63).
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- The new issue of Game Face Magazine online is up and running. Check it out here.
- Cleveland’s Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities Jr. Division Boys (ages 13-15) team is in the house tonight. The team is headed to Compton, Calif., Aug. 6-11 to take part in the RBI World Series and will be honored before tonight’s game. The team will meet mayor Frank Jackson and Sizemore, then watch the game in a suite. Not a bad night, all the way around.
- The Tigers are batting .307 with 109 runs scored in their last 19 games at Progressive nee Jacobs (and never Geico) Field, dating back to July 24, 2006. The Tigers have collected 10 or more hits in 14 of those 19 games. No wonder they don’t bother to take BP here.
- Francisco is in an 0-for-18 funk. Wedge admitted it’s “not fair” to Francisco that the rookie has been thrust into the three-hole because of injuries this season. But the Indians think this will be a good experience for him.
- Marte is 0-for-11 and is batting .224 over his last 13 games.
- Garko is batting .297 with two homers, four doubles and 10 RBIs in his last 10 games.
- The Indians are 15-27 against the AL Central this season, exceeding last year’s loss total against the Central (48-24 in ’07).
- Anthony Reyes made his debut in the Tribe organization for Triple-A Buffalo last night, going five innings and giving up three runs on five hits, including two homers, in an 8-7 win over Durham.
- Reyes was helped by a big night from the recently promoted Trevor Crowe, who went 3-for-5 with three runs scored, a triple, a homer and a stolen base.
- Down at Class A Kinston, Beau Mills went 2-for-3 with a homer and four RBIs in a 7-2 win over Myrtle Beach. Mills leads the Carolina League with 73 RBIs.
- But Mills has some company in the RBI department, now that C Carlos Santana (acquired in the Casey Blake trade, for those with bad memories) is on hand. Santana drove in his 97th run of the season last night. His total ranks second in all the Minor Leagues.