Second Thoughts Game #150: Indians 4, Astros 2
Corey Kluber struck out a career high 14 batters over seven innings and the Cleveland Indians (77-73) broke a four game losing streak, defeating the Houston Astros (67-84) 4-2 on Tuesday night.
Kluber allowed a run over seven innings on seven hits and a pair of walks and was backed up by the Cleveland offense with four runs, two coming on a sixth inning two out home run to the Crawford Boxes in left by Yan Gomes.
Kluber struggled through the first allowing a pair of two out singles, the second of which came off the bat of Marwin Gonzalez and produced the tying run.
The broadcasters on SportsTime Ohio, Rick Manning and Matt Underwood, talked early in the game about how Kluber should be “considered” for the Cy Young Award. Who’s not considering him? He’s in the top five of most major statistical categories. The voters are sure to consider him and then pick Felix Hernandez for the award.
His case wasn’t helped after his ERA took a three-run hit on Tuesday from a changed scoring decision from his Sept 1st start against the Tigers.
Jesus (Aguilar) sighting
Jesus Aguilar pinch-hit for Jason Giambi in the sixth after Gomes’ home run. It was the 27th at-bat and 32nd plate appearance for the rookie first baseman. Since his September 1 call-up, he has played one full game and is 1-for-11 with a walk and five strikeouts.
Aguilar hit .420 (34-for-81) in his final 21 games with the Columbus Clippers prior to his most recent promotion. He hit five homers and nine doubles with 13 runs driven in over that span, including a walk-off three-run home run in the tenth against Indianapolis on August 25, the day before they clinched the division.
After he was promoted, he had three at-bats on September 1st and got one at-bat until his only start on September 6th. It is tough for anyone, let along a rookie, to have any consistency when they are not playing.
Astros second baseman Jose Altuve collected hit numbers 210 and 211 to tie and break the all-time single season hit record for Houston. He broke Craig Biggio’s record set in 1998. Altuve and Biggio are the only ones from the Houston organization to get 200 hits in a single season.
It is a special distinction to be sure. 200 hits is no small feat. Consider that the last time anyone got 200 hits in a single season was 2009 when Derek Jeter and Robinson Cano did it for the Yankees, Ichiro Suzuki for the Mariners and Ryan Braun did it for the Brewers.
If you’re from Ohio, there is one name that comes to mind when thinking about hits – and that’s Pete Rose. He’s also the last Red to collect 200 hits in a single season. He did it for them in 1965, 66, 68, 69, 70, 73, 75, 76 and 77. He did it one more time in 1979 with the Phillies.
Other points of interest
The Baltimore Orioles and the Washington Nationals both clinched their respective divisions on Tuesday. Is it possible that we could see a Beltway series?
Detroit got a clutch three-run homer from J.D. Martinez in the ninth to bea…oh, wait. No, they lost the game in the bottom half when their closer couldn’t hold it down. Still, Martinez seems to find ways to beat Cleveland even when he’s not playing them.
Nonetheless, Cleveland is back to 6.5 games out of first and their elimination number remains at six.
The Royals and the A’s both lost as well, but the Mariners won. The Blue Jays also lost, which moves them into a tie with Cleveland and the wildcard deficit is down to five and the elimination number remains at eight. There is still a small glimmer of hope. Very small.
Michael Rich is a senior majoring in Communications at The Ohio State University.
At this point, the Indians should give some of these arms some rest, preserve them for next season and see what they have with some of these other arms.