Game Twenty: Indians 15, Royals 1

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via www.fangraphs.com



Highest WPA Lowest WPA
CC Sabathia .169 Victor Martinez -.043
Casey Blake .111 Travis Hafner -.014
David Dellucci .106

So the baseball deities were playing an elaborate joke - CC Sabathia is actually a good pitcher, the hitters are good at working opposing pitching, and Casey Blake is an MVP candidate. I was kidding about that last part.

Ignore the 15 runs for a second. CC Sabathia pitching six shutout innings after what he'd done to start the season overshadows a 30-run output, because if CC isn't a reasonable facsimile of last year's Cy Young winner, the Indians' chances of making the playoffs goes from likely to unlikely. The 11 strikeouts that accompanied those six innings serve as a potent amnesiac. And if you watched Sabathia pitch, looking nothing like the body double who pitched in place of him in his first three starts, you'd mark April 22nd as his first start of the season, because whatever happened before didn't matter. At least you'll think that for the next five days, for then that start will mean absolutely everything.

OK, the second's over. Grady Sizemore, Travis Hafner, and  Victor Martinez went a combined 2-for-15, so all that offense was created by the guys that haven't been carrying their weight. Casey Blake lead the way with four hits, including a game-breaking grand slam in the fourth inning. After that, it seemed as though the offense collectively went into the zone, working counts without thinking, hitting pitches the other way like they do every day in batting practice.

One worry about the game, though - the 14-run margin of victory means that the Indians have now scored more runs than they've allowed. And you know what that means: Pythagoras will be angry at Eric Wedge.

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