Jul 26, 2012; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Indians right fielder Shin-Soo Choo (17) walks to the dugout after striking out in the third inning against the Detroit Tigers at Progressive Field. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-US PRESSWIRE
Well, that question I asked Thursday night has been definitively answered: no, that four-run seventh inning was not the spark that started a pennant drive. Instead, it may have been the high-water mark for the Indians' season, both emotionally and in the standings.
Don't blame Ubaldo Jimenez for this loss. He allowed three runs through six innings, and allowed two more in the seventh thanks to Tony Sipp. If the Indians had been leading (in other words, have score more than three runs), you probably would have seen Joe Smith as soon as Jimenez got into trouble, or perhaps have started the inning with him. But because the Tribe offense managed just one run off Minnesota starter Brian Duensing, the Indians were trailing 3-1 going into that inning, and that led to sending Jimenez back out. Duensing, before today's start, had an ERA of over 10.00 as a starter.
Tomorrow will be a very interesting off-day, as the Indians will need to decide whether they'll be buying for this year, buying for this year and next year, selling, or simply holding. I'm still inclined to think that they'll be looking to add players, though those additions should be made with 2013 in mind, because I don't think the Indians are going to be a factor in 2012.