For seven innings the Indians played exceptional baseball, especially given the importance the game had for the Minnesota Twins. Jeremy Sowers pitched seven innings of shutout baseball, and the offense scored three runs on two home runs. Going into the eighth, it looked as through the Indians had dealt the Twins a critical blow to their playoff aspirations. Detroit had just came from behind to beat Toronto, and Minnesota was two innings away from going down 6.5 games with less than 20 games to play. The Twins have seven games left against the Tigers, but even so, there is in effect no room for error.
It was then that the Indians conveniently melted down, allowing the Twins to score six times. The disastrous eighth frame started with an Asdrubal Cabrera error on a simple backhanded play. Tony Sipp then walked Joe Mauer, bringing the tying run to the plate. No problem, for Eric Wedge had Chris Perez warming in the bullpen for this eventuality. Sipp would have stayed in had Justin Morneau been batting cleanup, but Morneau was out with an injury, so it was Michael Cuddyer at the plate, and Perez on the mound. Cuddyer blasted a game-tying three-run home run. The hilarity continued after Brendan Harris flied out for the first out of the inning; Delmon Young singled, then Matt Tolbert blooped a perfectly placed ball into shallow left field to chase Young to third. Then Lou Marson allowed a pitch to get by him to the backstop, and Young scored the go-ahead run. Jason Kubel provided the capper to the meltdown by smashing a home run into the right field upper deck.
The game doesn't really mean a whole lot to the Indians, but it was extremely depressing to see the two guys who are probably going into next season as the primary setup men completely blow a game meaningful to at least the other team.
Next Up: Carmona vs. Baker, 8:10 PM
|Highest WPA||Lowest WPA|
|Jeremy Sowers||.383||Chris Perez||-.737|
|Trevor Crowe||.112||Tony Sipp||-.141|
|Lou Marson||.073||Luis Valbuena||-.069|