You got bad, bad luck
Where do you come out on jinxes?
When Cliff Lee was hurling a no-no last night, I’m assuming you didn’t let the words “no-hitter” come out of your mouth. But how far did you take the superstition? Did you refuse to leave your seat or adjust the volume on the TV for fear that the slightest alteration in viewing experience would negatively impact Clifton Phifer?
People get antsy when no-hitters and perfect games are on the line, especially people directly affiliated with a ballclub. So there were some players who were quite a bit of a surprised when the operators of the jumbotron at Progressive Field decided, just before the start of the eighth inning, to flash a graphic noting that the last perfect game in Tribe history was Len Barker’s May 15, 1981, gem against the Blue Jays.
Well, as it turns out, the graphic was a scripted part of the Indians’ weekend celebration of all things ’80s. It was scheduled to run regardless of what Lee had going on.
I’m not a big believer in jinxes, but maybe this would have been a good time to deviate from the script. Or maybe Lee shouldn’t have left a changeup over the plate. Either way.
EXCRUCIATING MINUTIA OF THE DAY…
- Jake Westbrook’s rehab is on hold. In the first setback Westbrook has had since his Tommy John ligament replacement surgery one year ago, the Indians appear to have scrapped previous plans to have him make his third rehab start Wednesday. Westbrook is still dealing with some soreness in his right elbow from after his start Friday for Double-A Akron. He played catch today and is tentatively scheduled to throw a bullpen session Wednesday. No word on when the Indians are now targeting that third start to take place, but this would obviously push back Westbrook’s big league return.
- Grady Sizemore had an MRI on his sore left elbow today, and the results were positive enough that the Indians had Sizemore play catch out to 60 feet and take dry swings with the bat. These are his first baseball activities since he went on the DL on May 31. The Indians still won’t know if Sizemore’s elbow will require surgery until he continues to increase his baseball activities and they see how his elbow responds. They don’t even know what his schedule is for tomorrow yet, because they want to see how he responds from today’s action.
- Aaron Laffey’s rehab assignment will begin Thursday, when he’ll throw three innings in a start for Triple-A Columbus. The Indians are building Laffey, working his way back from a right oblique strain, back up as a starter. He could be back within a couple weeks.
- The Indians announced the signing of four of their 2009 Draft picks today. First baseman Ben Carlson (Sixth Round, Missouri State), right-hander Brett Brach (10th Round, Monmouth), left-hander Kirk Wetmore (11th Round, Bellevue Community College) and infielder Kyle Smith (14th Round, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo).
- I caught some flack for writing this article about Yadier Molina’s double and whether or not Choo could have made the play. It was not an opinion piece. It was a simple statement of fact that there was debate — both in the press box and in the Indians’ clubhouse and, I can only imagine, among many of you — as to whether or not Choo made the best of efforts to catch that ball. And I felt the debate was strong enough that it necessitated a short separate story.
- If you want my opinion on the matter, I don’t think Choo could have realistically made the catch, given how shallow he played, but I definitely think he could have made a better effort to get a glove on it at the wall. The replay is linked to the story, if you’d like to judge for yourself.
- According to Elias Sports Bureau, no Indians pitcher had taken a no-hit bid into the eighth inning since CC Sabathia did so at Detroit on April 7, 2002. Lee would have been the first reigning Cy Young Award winner to throw a no-hitter since Bob Gibson did it for the Cardinals on Aug. 14, 1971, against the Pirates.
- Lee now has a 2.07 ERA over his last 12 starts.
- The Indians are 15-11 since May 20.
- Don’t forget about the American Red Cross blood drive taking place on Gateway Plaza before tomorrow night’s game.
- Choo was playing with a yo-yo before tonight’s game. He can do the “around the world” and the “rock the cradle.” In my book, that’s talent.