Last night in the post game interview, Manning and Underwood asked Orlando Cabrera about the Tribe’s hot start. Specifically they asked- “If we would have told you in spring training that the Indians would be 20-8…” and before they could even finish the question Cabrera answered “I would have believed you, no doubt.”
Orlando and his Tribe teammates may just have been that confident. Certainly they were the only ones, but now the rest of the baseball community (outside of Keith Law and Colin Cowherd) are starting to believe it too.
When you think back to opening day, you can even see some evidence of it. Down 14-0, an Indians team that didn’t believe in themselves may have called it a day. They may have gone through the motions of those last four innings. The Indians did not. They came back to score 10 runs and make it a ballgame. Many of us observed at the time that it was nice to see the Indians keep fighting, but we were really just scratching for anything to stay positive about.
The Indians are 19-6 since that opening series with the White Sox. Chicago on the other hand, find themselves 10.5 games behind the Indians with an 9-19 mark since that opening series.
It’s not just encouraging to see the Indians confident, but that they are winning games in all sorts of ways. Early in the season the Tribe was jumping out to big leads early and keeping their foot on the opponents throat. There have also been victories where the team scored 3 runs or less and rode good pitching and defense to a win. Lately, the Indians have been falling behind and coming back for dramatic wins in the last at-bat.
They have overcome the loss of a few key players, including starting pitchers Carrasco and Talbot. Grady Sizemore missed the begining of the season, and now DH Travis Hafner has missed a handful of games. Many were wondering how the team would react to an off day in which OF Shin-Soo Choo got into some legal troubles. If last night is an indication, they have not lost the swagger of the hottest team in the game.
In fact, the team in all of baseball that may be hotter than the Indians right now reside in Columbus. The Clippers have won 13 in a row, and have outscored their opponents by 58 runs during that streak. Their overall record is 21-5, meaning that between the AAA and major league club, the Indians organization is winning at a .745 clip.
So you might want to get a nap in this week, as the Tribe on the west coast is can’t miss baseball.