Sky of memory and shadow, your burning wind fills my arms tonight
It would be silly to post anything silly on an anniversary like this. So let’s get right to tonight’s lineups, shall we?
INDIANS (71-73): CF Grady Sizemore, LF David Dellucci, RF Shin-Soo Choo, DH Travis Hafner, C Victor Martinez, 1B Michael Aubrey, 3B Andy Marte, 2B Josh Barfield, SS Asdrubal Cabrera. LHP Zach Jackson (0-2, 5.64).
ORIOLES (64-80): LF Lou Montanez, RF Nick Markakis, DH Melvin Mora, 3B Aubrey Huff, C Ramon Hernandez, 1B Kevin Millar, CF Jay Payton, SS Juan Castro, 2B Brandon Fahey. RHP Brian Bass (3-4, 5.01).
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- Cabrera is a little bit hot. He’s hit .536 (15-for-28) with 10 RBIs over his last nine games. Hitting coach Derek Shelton said Cabrera is staying more balanced in the box. He used to lunge at pitches and chase pitches out of his zone. He’s been more selective since his return from Buffalo. He’s also benefitted from working with Martinez on the fine art of switch-hitting. Martinez was something of a mentor to Cabrera while he was on the DL.
- Speaking of Martinez, this is the first time Vic, Sizemore and Hafner have been in the same lineup since May 25.
- Speaking of Sizemore, he’s having a rough trip, going 1-for-22 with one RBI and two runs scored. And this has been a trend this season. Sizemore’s batting .306 with 19 homers and 56 RBIs at home and .224 with 12 homers and 29 RBIs on the road. Eric Wedge said he’d be concerned if it was a trend over several years. But for now he shrugs it off as “one of those things.”
- Barfield in the starting lineup for the first time since June 9. He said he has not yet decided if he’s going to play in winter ball.
- Interesting that Aubrey’s in there for the second time this series. Ryan Garko once again on the bench.
- If the Indians get plunked by one more pitch this season, they’ll set a new American League record. They are currently tied with the 1996 Blue Jays for the record of 92. The Major League record is 100 by the 1997 Astros.
- Kelly Shoppach’s 19 homers are the third-most among MLB catchers. Not bad for a guy who’s been in less than 100 games.
- Joe Tait and Bruce Drennan will be in the STO booth for the nightcap of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Royals. It will be the first time they’ve worked together since 1982. I think this would be a slightly more significant arrangement if they had worked more than three years together on WUAB back in the day.
UPDATE (6:57 p.m. ET): Just heard an O’s radio announcer say, “We need to discombooble Asdrubal.” Genius.
UPDATE No. 2 (7:45 p.m.): All right, I’m a Bruce Springsteen fan. You know this. As such, it is my duty to defend the man’s work when necessary. Just now, at Camden Yards, they played “Born in the U.S.A.” while showing patriotic fans in the stands holding American flags. Has nobody listened to the lyrics of “Born in the U.S.A.”? This drives me absolutely crazy. It’s not a patriotic song. It’s an angry song whose narrator is a Vietnam veteran treated like dirt upon his return from the war. Is anybody else eternally bothered by the misuse of this song? Am I alone here? I am discomboobled by this.
UPDATE No. 3 (8:33 p.m.): I mean, I’ve seen some guys overmanage before. But Dave Trembley… you’ve really shown me something this week, my friend. Uncle.