Hope Dies Last
In a few months, we’ll either elect our first black president, our first female vice president or our first Ralph Nader.
Obviously, anything’s possible these days. And the Indians, in the midst of a 10-game winning streak, are now 10 1/2 games back in the AL Central, staving off mathematical elimination.
Some people take this more seriously than others. Like the pleasant fellow who wrote me this:
“I will remind you, once again, that the Indians were 9.5 games out of first place on September 7th, 2005 before making an unbelievable run at it.”
And falling short. But that’s neither here nor there, apparently.
“Stop assuming we are all pessimistic idiots like you.”
I resent that. I happen to be an optimistic idiot.
Well, according to Baseball Prospectus’ playoff odds report, the Indians still have a 1.65 percent chance of winning the division and a 0.22 percent chance of winning the AL Wild Card. So there’s that.
Chicago journalist Studs Terkel wrote a book with one of my all-time favorite titles, “Hope Dies Last.” With that notion in mind, I’m dedicating this blog entry to all the non-pessimistic people, idiot or otherwise, who think the Indians can pull of a miracle here.
Here are tonight’s lineups…
INDIANS (65-67): CF Grady Sizemore, 2B Jamey Carroll, DH David Dellucci, SS Jhonny Peralta, 1B Victor Martinez, LF Shin-Soo Choo, RF Franklin Gutierrez, C Kelly Shoppach, 3B Andy Marte. LHP Jeremy Sowers (2-6, 5.95).
MARINERS (50-83): RF Ichiro Suzuki, SS Yuniesky Betancourt, LF Raul Ibanez, 3B Adrian Beltre, 2B Jose Lopez, CF Wladimir Balentien, C Kenji Johjima, DH Jeff Clement, 1B Miguel Cairo. RHP Felix Hernandez (8-8, 3.28).
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- The Indians’ record since trading CC Sabathia is 28-16. The Brewers’ record in that same span is 28-17.
- Look for Victor Martinez to return to catching early next week. He’ll likely catch about twice a week, playing first base and DH the rest of the time.
- Travis Hafner returned to action at Triple-A Buffalo after a few work days and went 1-for-3 with a double and a run scored before being removed late. He was reported to have had no problems with his shoulder before, during or after the game. He’ll remain with the Bisons through the rest of their season, which wraps up Monday.
- The Indians took their team photo today. It in no way resembled the Opening Day lineup.
- Cliff Lee’s 19 wins through August are tied for the second-most in club history. It’s been done four times, with Gaylord Perry the last to do it in 1972. Bob Lemon won 20 games before the end of August in 1954.
- The Tribe ranks fifth in the Majors in August OPS with a .833 mark.
- Don’t forget that tomorrow’s 3:55 p.m. ET game is a radio-only affair. It will not be shown on TV.
- The Indians have batted .289 and put together a 3.96 staff ERA during this 10-game winning streak.
- Double-A Akron has clinched a Wild Card spot in the Southern Division of the Eastern League playoffs. They’ll face the Bowie Baysox in a best-of-five series that begins Wednesday.