I’ll say this, they were efficient. The Indians scored 6 runs on 9 hits in beating the Angels 6-2. Aaron Laffey pitched well enough, and the bullpen continued it’s outstanding season by holding the Angels scoreless for 4 innings. The Tribe got big hits from Grady Sizemore and Ryan Garko, who hit a three run homer on an absolute hanger of a breaking ball from Jared Weaver. You knew that was going to be a homer by watching Garko’s eyes light up as the ball came near the plate. Seriously, that thing was a meatball and Garko drilled it.
Sizmore went 2 for 5 and reminded me of Rickey Henderson in his prime in the 4th inning. I’m sure much has already been written in Tribe blogs about the sequence, but it is worth rehashing. Grady put down a beautiful bunt leading off the inning. He put it down the third baseline in just the right spot and beat the throw by a step. Then he takes off on I believe the very next pitch and steals second easily. Cabrera hits a grounder to the right side that kicks off the first baseman’s glove and towards second base. Kendrick was on his way to cover the bag, and so he was out of position to field it. Sizemore scores standing up on the play. So he bunted his way on, stole second, and scored from second on an infield hit. That is exactly what a prototypical lead-off man does. Now I don’t consider Grady to be a typical lead-off hitter, but that was a great sequence.
I’m going to have to devote a piece to Asdrubal Cabrera soon. This guy is a stud. He goes 2-4 and is ticked that he didn’t go 4-4. It makes me nervous what kind of mood or attitude he might get when he struggles at the plate. Fortunately, we haven’t seen him in a prolonged slump. He has been money, and just what the doctor ordered in that 2 spot. Since he came up around the trade deadline, is it safe to say that he has had a bigger impact for a pennant contending team than any player who was dealt for? I think so. Here is a guy batting .316 overall, and .294 with two outs and men on base! Not to mention an upgrade defensively, and securing a firm grasp on the 2 hole, which was a problem area. Sure beats trading for Troy Glaus doesn’t it?