☰ Menu
Cleveland Indians

Mariners 3, Indians 0: Marla Ridenour's final thoughts

By Marla Ridenour Published: June 29, 2014

Fifteen final thoughts after the Indians go 1-2 against the Mariners and fall to 3-7-4 in road series this season.

1. The Indians reached the 81-game mark 39-42. At least season’s midpoint they were 43-38, second in the AL Central and one game back. This year they're third and 61/2 games out.

2. General manager Chris Antonetti seemed to be spending the entire road trip in manager Terry Francona’s office at Safeco Field, leading one beat writer to jokingly ask if a trade was in the works. The quip received no response.

3. The pursuit of a right-handed bat might be a consideration to give the Indians a more balanced lineup. On Sunday, the Indians trotted out six left-handed batters and two switch-hitters (Carlos Santana and Nick Swisher). Switch-hitter Asdrubal Cabrera had the day off. But Francona downplayed the notion that a right-handed hitter was needed.

4. “We’re OK, we’ve got switch hitters,” Francona said before Sunday’s game. “I’ve never gotten too involved in saying what we need because first of all I like our team a lot and I think when I say something like that it means that somebody needs to go. I don’t really feel like that. Instead of asking for another hitter, let’s try to get our guys going. I’ve always felt like that. I also know Chris is always trying to see what makes sense for us.”

5. One of the guys the Indians need to get going is right fielder David Murphy. After an 0 for 3 day in the series finale, Murphy is 1 for his last 42 and has gone 32 games without a home run. Despite the slump, he remained third among Tribe regulars with runners in scoring position before Sunday.

6. Just wondering if a platoon with Nick Swisher in right field would help. Actually that would mean a three-man platoon with right-handed hitting Ryan Raburn (hitting .203), left-handed hitting Murphy (batting .244) and switch-hitting Swisher (.193).

7. Francona believes the Indians are stronger with Carlos Santana at first base over Swisher, leaving Swisher to DH most of the time and leaving no spot on the roster for Jason Giambi (although that’s another matter). Francona also believes in letting veterans hit their way out of slumps, which likely means he doesn’t want to mess with Murphy, especially when he helped carry the Tribe early in the season.

8. But other than Jason Kipnis (.249), who sat out a month with an oblique strain, the aforementioned three are the ones who need to get going.

9. Tuesday’s start by right-hander Justin Masterson against the Dodgers will be an interesting one, especially after pitching coach Mickey Callaway said Masterson looked so strong in Saturday’s bullpen session. Count Callaway among those who aren’t sure if Masterson’s inflamed right knee, which Masterson said has been sore since his second start of the season, is a reason for his disappointing season (4-5, 5.03).

10. “I would assume that if he felt like he couldn’t drive to home plate because of his knee it was an issue,” Callaway said.

11. Masterson is one of the Indians who needs to get going as well. “We need him to have a good second half,” Callaway said.

12. Rookie left-hander T.J. House didn’t seem to mind that his locker was in between the bat boy’s and the lost and found in the visiting clubhouse. “That’s what happens when you show up a little late,” said House, recalled from Triple-A Columbus to start Sunday.

13. Considering House’s performance, right-hander Zach McAllister may be stuck in Columbus for a while. Francona wouldn’t say whether House is remaining in the rotation. “We have a day off coming up (Thursday), so we can do what we want. Hadn’t really thought about it,” Francona said.

14. House has no idea what his future holds. “I don’t know a thing,” he said. “Just know that I had today and I was happy to have that.”

15. Lonnie Chisenhall was among the Indians who were impressed with House Sunday. “It was awesome. He did what we know he can do, using the sinker, throwing a lot of strikes and working fast,” Chisenhall said. “Two runs through six-plus innings is normally a great outing, unless your team doesn’t score any. I think he did a great job.”

Add This


Prev Next

Indians news, features and notes