World Series Game One: Kluber, Indians Dominate in 6-0 victory

[Indians 6, Cubs 0]

I’m taking a lot of flack for just feeling like the Cleveland Indians are meeting much resistance in this postseason. It’s no fault of their own, but it just seems like the Tribe hasn’t had a moment where they’re needing to press or play from behind or any high-leverage spots at all. Their model works extremely well and almost takes the mystery out of it – the mystery and drama that you live for this time of year if you’re not solely a fan of either team.

And that’s what I want to see. I want to see the Indians get down two games to one and then see how they respond. I want to see guys in the bullpen need to get big outs other than Andrew Miller and Cody Allen. I want to see how the Indians hitters do when they’re in a 4-0 hole in a game they have to have. We haven’t seen any of that yet.

Last night it was the same thing I feel like we’ve seen eight times previous this October: junk run, junk run, followed by home run by off-brand player; solid pitching performance and oh hey look the bullpen has the ball and the game is over. Never one real moment of suspense in last night’s 6-0 win.

It was three hours and 37 minutes of domination, and domination that feels quite gimmicky. I realize I’m just not going to know what to think if this is one of those goofy years where the little Cleveland Indians go and win the whole thing without any resistance. And as an Ohioan if that makes me a terrible person, so be it. There are better teams that have not run through the playoff field like this and I don’t want to see the Indians be the first, so there I said it.

But hey, lets look at the positives. At least you can get into tonight’s game for less than $500 on the street. That’s reasonable, right? Not really, but it brings a little less bitterness towards Cleveland; a city that has no business commanding $900 standing room only ticket prices. I’ve been to Cleveland. It’s a dump. How are there that many people with that much money? Quit spending your savings on World Series tickets.

Of note:

  • Francisco Lindor had three hits, including a two-out single in the first; he stole second base, and then scored on Jose Ramirez’s infield single to make it 1-0.  He’s hitting .371 in the postseason. Super-star.
  • Jose Ramirez also had three hits. He’s up to .290 in the postseason. Another guy who isn’t a superstar but a very good player. I almost classify him as a poor man’s Lindor.
  • Roberto Perez homered off Jon Lester – the hardest ball that’s been hit off Lester all season long (112 MPH on a cool night), and then homered again in the bottom of the eighth for the dagger. The more I say Perez is not a good baseball player, the more he’s going to continue to do stuff like this.
  • Corey Kluber set a big league record by striking out eight of his first nine outs in the World Series opener. He’s right on the echelon of being the horse I said he would need to be for the Indians to have any type of chance this postseason. He was absolutely dominating and one hitter in, the way he set down Dexter Fowler; I knew that the Cubs were in a lot of trouble.
  • Terry Francona is 9-0 in the World Series now in his career.

So tonight’s game gets underway in about three hours. It’s been moved up an hour due to rain in the forecast. I think this is the biggest game of the series, without a doubt. If the Cubs win this, I think they can roll. If the Indians win this, all bets are off; and they may be already, but if the Indians win it the series has to at least come back to Cleveland barring a sweep in Chicago.

Hopefully my kid goes to bed on time – she likes to stay up all of the sudden and watch baseball because it’s better than the alternative. And hopefully by the time she’s asleep the Cubs bats are quite the opposite.