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Cleveland Indians

4-7-09 Morning Roundup

By jcfortun Published: April 7, 2009

Texas Rangers ace Kevin Millwood was making his fourth consecutive opening day start since joining the Texas Rangers.

The results have never been good (0-3).

They were Monday.

Millwood pitched seven strong innings allowing just one run and five hits, all singles, to pick up the easy 9-1 win.

Millwood has been a disappointment for the Rangers. Over the last two seasons his ERA has hovered above 5.00. His record stands at 19-24.

Yet, the former Indian always seems to do one thing well: beat the Indians, Paul Hoynes wrote. Millwood is now 4-1 in six career starts against the Tribe.

Conversely, Indians starter Cliff Lee has never been very good while pitching in Texas (3-3, 9.19 ERA in six career starts), but that didn't seem to be the reason for his troubles Monday.

Lee retired the first four batters of the game before being hit in the left forearm on a Hank Blalock single up the middle.

The Rangers took advantage of the situation, posting four runs in the in the inning.

The Indians brass said the forearm shot was not a factor, Sheldon Ocker wrote.

Lee worked well through the third and fourth innings, but gave up a three-run home run to Blalock in the fifth that sealed his fate.

Anthony Castrovince had this to say in his blog:

Today's loss boiled down to a poorly pitched second inning and one particularly bad pitch to Blalock in the fifth.

On the other hand, Millwood was simply brilliant. Jim Reeves of the Star-Telegram credited Millwood's off season conditioning to the good start.

Reeves points out Rangers club president Nolan Ryan basically informed his pitchers during the off season to get in shape or find a new team.

Although the Rangers swung the bats well, the hitters gave all the credit to Millwood.

The rest...

The Indians were awestruck to have former President George W. Bush in their locker room Monday. Bush, a former owner of the Rangers, threw out the first pitch.

Catcher Kelly Shoppach, as well many other players, received signed baseballs from "Dubya" as well as pictures.

-- Omar Vizquel expects to play in Thursday's game.

"I can't hit Cliff Lee and Fausto Carmona," Vizquel joked with Paul Hoynes.

-- Anthony Castrovince has already moved onto Wednesday. Fausto Carmona must keep his composure and emotions intact, he writes.

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