April 24, 2014

Yankees 11, Indians 4: Where Andy Marte Pitches and I Go Insane

The [Indians-Yankees game] has used up words; they have weakened, they have deteriorated

–Henry James, 1915

OK.  Henry James was talking about World War I, not the Indians game last night.  You caught me.

But seriously.  What words can I use to talk about the “game” that took place last night?  Ridonkulous?  Shammockery?  Out-freaking-rageous? Some other tmetic construct?  That game blew my mind, and I am at a verbal loss.  Was that even baseball?  It seemed like some weird, performance art where you can’t quite watch, but you can’t look away either.

Let’s try some bullet points, because I really don’t know what else to say:

  • Mitch Talbot started the game, walked four batters in two innings, and left with a sore back.  He’ll have an MRI tomorrow, but he might be pregnant with self-doubt.
  • Unfortunately, the Indians’ bullpen was taxed from the previous night’s Fausto-implosion, so Raffy Perez was deemed the “long man”: he pitched two scoreless innings, but threw 39 pitches.  He was followed by a Procession of Depression™.
  • A bright spot!  A-Rod didn’t hit his 600th home run in Cleveland; he was 1-4 last night and went 3-17 in the series.  He will be taking his talents to Tampa Bay this weekend.
  • Tribe pitchers threw 233 pitches last night.  That’s about the right number of pitches in a nine inning game–if you combine both teams’ totals.
  • You can’t throw 233 pitches without walking some people, and boy did we do that.  Twelve times, actually.  That’s the most walks allowed by the Indians in a nine inning game since 1990.
  • In fact, every Indians pitcher to toe the rubber allowed a walk except for one guy…
  • That guy was Dandy Marte, who retired every batter he faced in a 1-2-3 ninth.
  • You read the previous bullet point correctly: DANDY MARTE DID SOMETHING GOOD.  FOR THE INDIANS.
  • Marte struck out Nick Swisher: not one person could avoid laughing at this, including Swisher and Marte.  At this point, the Indians were losing 11-1.
  • Marte’s fastest pitch was clocked at 88 mph; Aaron Laffey could not be reached for comment, but he’s thought to be chartreuse with envy.
  • One more Dandy-bullet: Marte struck out more batters than Frank Herrmann, Tony Sipp, and Joe Smith. COMBINED.  That is to say, he struck out ONE batter.
  • Jess Todd struck out the side in the eighth inning; unfortunately the three strikeouts were interrupted by four hits, a walk, and two runs.  Which serves to remind us: strikeouts are fascist, and they won’t be tolerated.  Watch out, Dandy.
  • Joe Smith proved he can do more than just give up runs: he threw a pitch that hit Carlos Santana in the knee, forcing the rookie from the game.  Smith also threw 28 pitches in one-third of an inning, letting up three hits, two walks, and four runs.  Super-duper stuff.
  • Santana should be ok; in fact, he finished the inning before being replaced by Chris Giminez.
  • The Yankees scored 11 runs, but only had two players with a multi-hit game, and one was Curtis Granderson, who had a bunt hit.
  • The Indians scored first (one run in the first inning) and last (three runs in the ninth).  In the seven interim innings, the offense managed four stinking baserunners, and none of them made it past first base.

Really, I don’t know what to write about this game.  It made me feel certifiably insane: nothing made sense.  Every time I’d look up, something weird was happening.  Here’s Raffy Perez in the third inning.  Here’s Andy Marte pitching.  Here’s Joe Smith trying to grow facial hair.  It just didn’t compute.  None of it.

“It’s something that I don’t like doing,” said Manny Acta postgame.  “I did it because we had to. At times, I feel that it looks like a mockery of the game and I don’t like it.  But we had no choice given that game yesterday and the guys left in the pen. [Hector] Ambriz threw over 40 pitches the night before and Chris Perez threw in three of the last four nights and he’s our closer.”

“Im glad it didn’t get any uglier,” Acta continued.  “Really, the people pay their money.  They don’t deserve watching some player pitch.”

In fact, the only thing that was mildly reassuring was the fact that Travis Hafner was a late scratch from the lineup with right shoulder soreness, and, according to Paul Hoynes, he may be heading to the DL.  That all made perfect sense to me, and reminded me to take comfort in the familiar.

Speaking of taking comfort in the familiar, the Indians are leaving the country for a few days.  Next up is a road trip to face the Toronto Blue Jays.  Roster moves will have to be made to fill out the overworked bullpen, and there’s no word yet on whether Mitch Talbot will have to make a trip to the DL.  Obviously, more on this as it develops.

“A mid-back strain,” said Acta.  “He stayed back and he will get an MRI.  We will find out more information tomorrow.”

  • http://www.numbersdont.com Mark Cameron

    “Marte’s fastest pitch was clocked at 88 mph; Aaron Laffey could not be reached for comment, but he’s thought to be chartreuse with envy.”

    Ouch…

    “One more Dandy-bullet: Marte struck out more batters than Frank Herrmann, Tony Sipp, and Joe Smith. COMBINED. That is to say, he struck out ONE batter.”

    Double ouch!

  • Karsten

    I loled.

    At all of this.

    Namely, the Dandy Marte pitching performance.

  • 5KMD

    Jon,

    Have you ever read the “B list” by Steve Buffum on one of the other Cleveland sports sites? You have a similar wit and outlook on life.

  • JNeids

    “strikeouts are fascist, and they won’t be tolerated”

    INTOLERANCE WILL NOT BE TOLERATED!

  • http://www.60bpm.com/ Robbie

    Son of a… I stopped watching when Rodriguez failed to hit his 600th. If I’d known Andy Marte was gonna pitch, I’d have stuck around. When I came in late and saw Perez pitching in the 3rd inning, my brain almost exploded. Wierdness for sure.

  • Andrew

    Dandy Marte should replace Kerry Wood in the bullpen. That way we can bring in anyone else to play third base. Marte makes me miss Peralta… and I can’t believe I just said “miss Peralta”…

    Yay for training camp!

  • creative

    this was BY far the best recap in the history of this website.

    thank you.

  • Stinkfist

    Come on Acta, the least you could have done was let Jake Westbrook pinch hit and put Tomlin at shortstop.

  • Harv 21

    Wednesday’s highlight – Miami jersey ejection.

    Yesterday’s highlight- failed top hitting prospect blanks powerful Yanks.

    Step right up to the sideshow, kiddies. Somewhere Dick Jacobs just snorted his morning coffee over his sports page.

  • Dan

    I can’t believe how many yankee fans were at the tribe game last night who were from OHIO. There were a ton from the columbus area which is unreal because why not root for the indians or the reds. It just shows how big of front runners they are. Makes me wanna puke

    I left right before the 9th and missed Marte pitching. That was the best part of the game too

  • Harv 21

    Or to paraphrase Paulie Walnuts: “I guess you could call that a baseball game.”

  • MP34

    @Dan, As much as I hate Yankees fans, don’t forget that the Yankees had their triple A affiliate in Columbus for quite a few years. I have a friend from Columbus that is a die hard Browns fan but likes the Yankees because he watched Jeter play there when he was a kid.

  • MattyFos

    MARTE!!!!!!
    Way to prove your worth!

  • Garry Owen

    Acta doesn’t seem to get it. I was at the game last night – paid a lot of money for it – and the BEST part of the game was Marte pitching. I yelled myself hoarse (not really). If he wants us to have fun for our money, he might as well add a 9th “player” to the line-up each night and just have them each rotate an inning on the mound. It’s better than what they’ve been doing all year, by and large.

    Now, I have to return to PA today and wait for next year’s annual trek to the Jake. Too bad I have to go back with this taste in my mouth (salved only in part by the dollar dogs).

    (Will always be the Jake.)

  • MP34

    By the way, this has to be one of the best Indians write ups of all time.

  • MattyFos

    Instead of calling Marte “Dandy” we should start calling him “Catfish” Marte

  • MattyFos

    So, Marte hit 88 MPH with that (from picture) throwing motion? Imagine if he had proper mechanics. He may hit 120 MPH… Marte has a hidden talent he’s been keeping secret. He may be on the top 100 prospect list again, this time as a pitcher.

  • AVincent

    Jon and WFNY,

    I might get shunned from these parts for saying this, but I don’t even watch that much baseball (Indians fan…) and yet I thoroughly enjoy reading your stuff.

    Of course the sure way to grab the interest of nerds: add math! and some wit.

    Thanks. Keep it coming.

  • mgbode

    Santana left not because of injury, but because he was ashamed at the team from the past two games.

    How often do you stop watching a 11-1 game in the 8th inning and feel upset the next morning that you didn’t watch the 9th?

    Peralta traded, Marte shines. Sure, not at 3B, but that is still how it worked. Maybe we finally found our closer?

  • Brent

    @Harv 21 – somewhere Dick Jacobs is dead.

  • JM

    MARTE IS OUR NEW CLOSER. TRADE WOOD!! RACK ‘EM HE SHUT THEM DOWN 1,2,3!

  • wacman

    I’m late to the party, but I was at this game…..and the amount of Yankee fans was sickening. It felt like an away game. Had fun though, especially cheering from the btm of the 8th on…..

  • john

    This may be the best Tribe post of the year. I. Feel. Your. Pain.

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