It's a mad dog's promenade

About that eighth inning today…

First off, for anybody wondering, the Ryan Garko double out was not a reviewable situation. Only disputed home runs can be reviewed. So while the replay clearly showed the ball hit the wall, not Carl Crawford’s glove, once the umpires decided it was an out, that’s it. It was an out. And the Tribe got hosed.

As for the near-melee in the bottom of the inning, I think the Indians were in the wrong there. While Kerry Wood didn’t own up to purposefully pitching inside to B.J. Upton, Victor Martinez’s comments seemed to indicate that that was indeed in the intent.

“You don’t see nobody stealing when it’s 9-0 in the sixth or seventh inning,” Martinez said.

Martinez was referencing Upton’s two swiped bags in the bottom of the sixth on Thursday, when the Tribe was up 9-0. But in my view, he had no right to be upset about that. The Rays were trying to take advantage of their speed to generate some offense, and that’s just what they did. They made it a 9-6 game, and the Indians held on for an 11-7 victory.

This is what Rays manager Joe Maddon had to say:

“It was really obvious that Wood came into the game to try and hit B.J. I know there’s all these unwritten rules in baseball. But to me, when the other team stops trying to score runs, that doesn’t mean you have to stop trying to score runs also. … The book was written when the ball wasn’t as lively. Scores change rather rapidly these days. So there’s a lot of pages from the book that need to be burned, extracted, whatever you want to call it.”

I can’t disagree with that, but Victor sure did.

“[Maddon] needs to worry about teaching his players to play the game the right way,” he said.

OK, then.

Victor’s frustrated. Everybody in that Tribe clubhouse is frustrated. But if the Indians were indeed trying to send a message to Upton, they just added unnecessary silliness to an already ridiculous series.


I’m unclear on the review rules, but what if Wedge had come out of the dugout screaming that the ball had hit the yellow line @ the top of the fence? Wouldn’t that have been a reviewable disputed home run situation?

e_hawk, that’s a good point. If Wedge argued that it left the yard and came back, but I don’t think the fence out there is like that.
For that matter, I think they just would have looked at the replay to see whether it was a home run or not — the call itself wouldn’t be overturned, as it wasn’t about a home run.
It seemed like a stupid move by Wood, but I can understand why Victor got upset, no matter what the intent. How many times can you get hosed by the umps in a series before you lose it?
Besides, the worst retaliation of the game came later, when McLellend called Francisco’s pulled back bunt attempt a strike. That call was just awful, and indicated to me that the umps just wanted the game over.

Let’s just hope the club’s bad luck and the pen’s horrid pitching has hit bottom. Wood & Victor might have been out of line, but in some small way, I felt good to be on the other side of bull’s eye. The time to throw at Upton would have been more in line yesterday, after they threw over Victor’s head the day before. The Ray’s announcers were like “settle down, you’re hitting 400, he’s just trying to get you out.” I guess your point of view all depends on who signs your check — AC time to get on twitter so we can bother you 24-7.

I have no problem with what Wood did. I think it’s about time someone on this team stood up for the team. They need someone to get them fired up! How many times have the Indians been hit without any retaliation? The thing is, if Wood had really wanted to hit Upton, don’t you think he would have?

For Wedge to storm from the dugout would require passion.
Surely you jest…

Yeah, I have to admit, I am happy with what Wood did. And to be honest, I was hoping there would be a fight, even if it meant ejections and suspensions. Sometimes those sort of things give a spark to a team or bring them together in a weird sort of way.

misstribe- totally agree. Sometimes its not about what you’re standing up for, but just the fact that you’re taking a stand. For a team as desperate as Cleveland to get something going, I’m surprised your against that AC.


The line-up card thing: I don’t know about you, AC, but it seemed very Joe Carbone-esque. I just want to know exactly when Wedge noticed. Do you ice your new starter or do let the other team suffer – tough call there.

I don’t know about anyone else, but if I’m Ryan Garko, and I get hosed on that play, I’m in a couple umpires’ faces, and I mean more than the classic footage of the George Brett Pine Tar incident. I know, we have classy guys, blah blah blah, but really, what does he have to lose? The braintrust has no faith in him, and regardless of how he played, he’d be on the bench anyway with Cliff pitching on Tuesday, so get fired up and get tossed? I love Ryan and I have a ton of respect for the kid and what he has to put up with, but that cost us the game there, and whether it was karma for the lineup card or what, that was bad. (And you know the officials knew they screwed up because they didn’t run Wedge…)

Somewhere Tim Donaghy was beaming over a great performance by the guys in black yesterday. Where are those 2 dudes from Toronto when we needed them?

(Yes, I know the Indians didn’t help themselves, but they didn’t lose that on their own either…)

They need to revise the review rule – it should apply to any kind of play at the plate or anything involving the OF fence.

yeah I am with Hafner going crazy……specially now DeRosa
is our defensive star?????????????????????????? at first.
Forgedaboudit………..send LaPorta down (so al least Columbus can win) and re-sign Brown and bring him up. he’ll have less strike outs and better contact and can really
play first.
The idea of weakening two positions and have a leadoff batter hitting .224 is classic “fire the manager” stuff.

Trade Shoppach for a pitcher, we can’t afford his all or nothing at this stage and bring up Toregas until Giminez gets untracked…………………….had high hopes for him,
maybe he roomed with Adam Miller……………………..

What speaks against asking the particular player (here: Crawford) if he made the catch?!
Because as nearly everyone could see, Crawford never thought he made an out anyway…so I know that may sound naive because we’re talking bout pro-sports BUT especially in Baseball (“respect the game”, “play the game the right way” blahblah) I wonder why nobody is even thinking about holding the players accountable to some point…

If I could ever ask for a three game winning streak and sweep of a division rival this would be the time. The problem is the Burnin’ Cuyahoga do not play the Tigers again until July 10th. They are playing some good baseball with their SPs of Verlander, Galarraga, and Porcello. It is conceivable that the division is already set by the time we meet them again considering they are playing so well. We went from having a chance to take 3 of 4 from this series only to fall flat on our faces and reverse course. At least we are no longer the WORST team in baseball.

Come on, everyone, let’s not start getting out there. LaPorta got the call over Brown because a) he was hitting better and b) he can play outfield. We already don’t use Garko enough at first (and he produces every time he gets a shot), so adding another first baseman to the line-up doesn’t make any sense (neither does playing DeRosa there, but I digress).
As for trading Shoppach — for what? Are teams lining up to trade us pitching for a guy hitting .210? Yes, he should have been dealt in the off-season when his value was high, but it’s going to take more than just Shoppach to get any kind of pitching.

If he was a real gentleman, Crawford should have told the umpires that wasn’t an out! We’ll remeber that when they’ll come to Cleveland later this month!

to back la porta and confront anybody that feels la porta needs to be sent down, im bringing it to the table that this guy is nothing short of a repeat story of evan longoria or ryan braun type player. the kid can smash. the bummer is, unlike tampa bay and the brewers who straight cut both players loose and let them make it happen, la porta is having his at bats stolen by david delucci. and dont let the numbers mess with your brain. this kid is hitting the ball, its just not finding the grass yet. friday nights game is a perfect example. he had 3 at bats: 1 with bases loaded, 1 with a man on 1st and 3rd and another one with a runner on base. all 3 at bats, he sent the outfielder to the warning track to make the catch. one in which was robbed off the wall by gabe gross. this guy just needs consistent at bats to get comfortable and shake the rookie nerves off a bit. given the opportunity this guy could knock grady off the throne as ‘clevelands hero” by seasons end.

I got a couple things to say here.
First of all- I was kind of surprised that Garko didn’t get in the umpires faces about that terrible call. I love Garko and all, but i think that he should of showed some frustration with that call. He was probably just being a respectable guy like we all know he is, but i guess i just would of liked to see him getting upset and showing that he cared. Which again i know he does care a great deal, but just to see him maybe kick a bucket out of frustration…and get his foot stuck in it (haha) would of been great.

and as for Laporta- I think that he should platoon with benny out in left field. The guy can hit, when he gets the oppurtunity to, and right now this team could use just about any help we can get right now.

and for the lineup- Why is Derosa at first? And Ryan playing left field the other day? I’m happy that Garko was in the lineup, but i really think we should have him as an everyday first basemen–and when victor plays first Garko should DH. We need his bat in the lineup. We can’t afford having him sit on the bench half the year. Carrol should be at 2nd, jhonny at short, Derosa at 3rd. Then Choo in right, grady center and laporta/francisco in left.

kparker09, I need some clarification about your most recent post. Everyone makes mistakes so I will assume that’s what it was rather than neglecting our most productive hitter with RISP. Where is Asdrubal Cabrera in your lineup? Both he and Martinez are hitting .359 with RISP. You have Peralta at SS, Carroll at 2B and DeRosa at 3rd. I will assume it was an accident because IMO the only two guaranteed players to start every day is Martinez and Cabrera.

I am going to think outside the box (slightly) for a minute while I consider the wisdom of AC’s latest inbox and my favorite ESPN writer, Buster Olney. Let the venting begin.

1. The Milwaukee Brewers needs a second baseman since Rickie Weeks is out for the year. They lead the NL Central by 2 games and have already said that they will not use a utility infielder (Craig Counsell) every day. NOTE TO ERIC WEDGE, follow their lead. Milwaukee will use a white-eyed rookie for some time but probably by the end of May MLB executives should see some outside interest from their organization. I do not think he would garner anything substantial in a trade but I agree with AC’s analysis that the best thing for Josh Barfield would be a change of scenery. Perfect match. Next case.

2. The New York Mets lost Carlos Delgado and will be actively looking for his replacement quite soon. Olney cites Steve Popper, staff writer at, saying that Mark DeRosa would be “a perfect alternative, because if Delgado comes back in August, the Mets could use DeRosa in other ways.” If there is one thing the Indians have it is a plethora of first basemen (which DeRosa is not IMO but his versatility is common knowledge). Losing the remaining of his $5.5M salary is right in line with what the Dolans covet considering the fans dressed as empty seats these days at Progessive Field.

3. While it is a great conversation topic Mark Shapiro will never fire Eric Wedge. Last year Wedge had the injuries excuse coupled with the miraculous albeit tardy second half stretch. This year it is the bullpen woes, which the organization tries to convince us fans is not his fault. Conversely, he is trying everything he can to get it fix. Ditto that last sentence for the lineup. Of course, the ONE thing Wedge hasn’t tried to help fix the lineup is a CONSISTENT lineup. Not for just a series but how about for a month?

4. For everyone calling for trading Kelly Shoppach… STOP IT. It is useless to entertain that idea unless some desperate team approaches Shapiro with the perfect storm (for example Jason Varitek goes down for the year in Boston). A small subset of commenters on this very blog said that the team should have traded him during the winter meetings (we know who we are) but they didn’t. The guy has regressed every year in CS% and receiving pitches while simultaneously increased his errors and passed balls, not to mention the so-called “wild pitches” that don’t count against him. From 2006-2009 his K/AB ratio is atrocious: 40.09, 34.78, 37.7, and 43.55. I take into account his 16.76 AB/HR last year but that appears to be a “first year full time player fluke”/pitchers didn’t know to NOT throw him a fastball statistics. LACF, you’re right. Shoppach should go back to catching once every fifth day.

5. Lastly, I am making my weekly demand of a consistent lineup and after much deliberation I have made a slight alteration.
1. Cabrera-SS
2. Sizemore-CF
3. Martinez-C
4. Choo-RF
5. DeRosa-2B
6. Peralta-3B
7. LaPorta-LF
8. Garko-1B
9. matchup/INF day off-DH

**this lineup allows Wedge to give Francisco a spot start against a good matchup (i.e. Sonnanstine) but not everyday play since he has been subpar at best. Additionally, it affords the position players to get regular rest from the field by utilizing the open DH slot, hence THIS is when Jamey Carroll should get in the lineup (not every day…send Valbuena down for regular PT). The lineup will change slightly when Hafner returns but not much with respect to position play. Lock it up, tell everyone their role and use it for a month. By putting Sizemore in the 2 hole and LaPorta in the 7 hole it affords them protection with the hitters in front and behind them. When Shoppach catches Cliff Lee, simply move Martinez to DH and give his bones and joints a rest. Leave Garko at 1B. No more toying with the idea that DeRosa is your starting first baseman. No more Dellucci. Promise me this lineup for a month and I will gladly give the Burnin’ Cuyahoga my hard earned money.

I realize that Martinez is one of our most productive players. I just didn’t mention him at the catching postion because i think that’s pretty much a given.

And as for Jamey at 2nd i really do like the guy. He’s decent defensively and i like his bat in the lineup becuase he can get the bunt down and get on base.

I did fail to put Asdrubal in there. Obviously it was my mistake and should be playing 2nd and/or short. But like i said i still like Jamey so we should atleast have him as our number 1 utility player.

Amen, AM. From your keyboard to Wedge/Shapiro’s brains.
I actually have a friend who’s a Red Sox fan (one of the few who aren’t annoying), and he mentioned they’d be looking to deal Brad Penny at some point, most likely. I would wager that’s perhaps the best deal we could get for Shoppach, and even then we might have to add something to it. But the Sox are in need of a catcher for the future, as they’ve got nothing past Veritek. Penny’s numbers have been pretty unimpressive, though — but at this point, we’re already clearly stockpiling pitchers and throwing them against the wall.
Your line-up also lets us carry 8 relievers, if need be (which it looks like we will).

Great quote from Jim Ingraham at the News Herald:

“Sunday in Tampa Bay, the Indians’ third baseman was playing first base, their shortstop was playing third base, their second baseman was playing shortstop, and their first baseman was playing left field.

And none of it was because of injuries.”

It’s like we never had a spring training.

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