Last Night's Game
This was a big win because of the way the standings were set up, but also because several struggling hitters had excellent games, with Asdrubal Cabrera at the head of that list. And the longer this team sticks around in the race, the more that easy September finish comes into play. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. The Indians have a chance to pull within two games of a Wild Card spot today, and they'll be facing not Bartolo Colon but Tommy Milone, a pitcher who has given up at least three earned runs in seven of his last eight starts. And Milone hasn't pitched in the majors since August 2.
This week will mark one year since Josh Tomlin had Tommy John surgery, and already he's pitched 4.2 innings in a game in AA. The Indians are shooting for September 1 as the date that Tomlin could be activated from the 60-day, which is the date that major-league rosters can expand past 25 players. With both Scott Kazmir and Danny Salazar well past their innings total of a year ago, there should be some starts or at least innings available for Tomlin, assuming everything goes as planned.
From a 40-man roster perspective, the Indians could activate Tomlin without having to remove someone, as the roster currently sits at 39. However, they also need to add David Cooper to the active roster by that time in order to keep him in the organization.
Speaking of decisions, it looks like Chris Antonetti will be discussing trade deadline and callup decisions with Terry Francona over the next couple of days. Right now the Indians have an eight-man bullpen, but with two off-days between now and the end of the month, they shouldn't need to keep eight relievers in the bullpen. Plus, Ryan Raburn has been out with a sore calf. The problem is that there's nobody in the minors, at least on the 40-man roster (see below), that can really help the Indians off the bench. Cord Phelps is on the DL in Columbus, and neither Juan Diaz nor Tim Fedroff is having a good season. So that leads me to believe that the Indians are looking to add a position player via trade, because if there's any injuries to a position player from here on out, the Indians are in trouble. The Indians have a lot of pitching depth in Columbus, with guys like Blake Wood, Vinnie Pestano, Nick Hagadone, Preston Guilmet, even TJ House perhaps being able to pitch meaningful innings down the stretch.
AL Central News
This doesn't really affect the Royals, as Tejada was just this past week placed on the DL. But this suspension will likely end Tejada's career. Based on what Tejada had to say about the suspension, I think he has grounds for appeal if he wanted to fight it, as he had a Therapuetic Use Exemption for Adderall, but it looks like he's not going to do that.
Hey, Andrew Albers is human after all.
Petricka was drafted in the second round in 2010, and originally pitched as starter in the Chicago organization, but had an awful year in 2012, mainly because his secondary stuff hasn't developed. But as a reliever, he's done well in both AA and AAA, so it looks like that's where he'll remain for the time being.
Today's Classic Clip
A young Nolan Ryan makes his only World Series appearance in 1969, and it came in relief.