Bauer took the mound Monday night with a mangled mess of a finger and not one person in Cleveland or Toronto had any idea what to expect. He got through 2/3 of an inning before his finger started gushing blood.
I was praying they could get that last out of the inning and he could get some treatment to maybe go back out there for another few innings but his finger was literally dripping blood all over the place. So to the bullpen we went and what a ride it would be. Tha Don Otero first, followed by Jeff Manship. I’ve been waiting for this one for two reasons, one Manship was hilariously bad when he played for the Twins and two, it was Monday making it JUST ANOTHER MANSHIP MONDAY!!!
Ok next we got the moment
we’ve all literally no one has been waiting for and that is Zach McAllister throwing meaningful pitches in the postseason. Obviously no surprise he gave up one of the two Blue Jay runs. However, after we survived McAllister, we all looked around and realized it was almost Miller time with a lead. Tito went Shaw, Allen, Miller in a masterful orchestration of bullpen use possible by only thy holiness that is Terry Francona.
What a win it was. However, game four did not go as planned and now we have to rely on Ryan Merritt to avoid playing this weekend. Who the fuck is Ryan Merritt? He’s that guy who pitched that game against the Royals a few weeks ago after we already clinched. Feeling better? Me either. So what else has he done? Well, in the big leagues, nothing. He has 1 start and 11 total major league innings and now we are asking him to close out a series on the road. Tossing Merritt in game four vs Kluber was a tough call for Francona but he was pretty decisive about, it as soon as Bauer came out, it was Kluber on short rest for game four.
Kluber gives you a great chance to win and will at least get you through some innings which allows your bullpen to rest for what could be another platoon game in game 5. So with the Kluber loss we look to Ryan Merritt who has the benefits of a rested pen behind him. We have seen the Tribe has yet to relinquish a lead to the BJ’s and I trust Terry Francona with my unborn children so don’t be surprised when we win game five.
The last tidbit worth mentioning is that before the series started, Jason Kipnis said something to the effect of “we’re going up to Toronto to try and get one, maybe more.” I found that very odd, just one? Why not close it out? Well I now take comfort in that Francona has done this before and even though the club will play to win, he and the boys know we aren’t going to win every game you just gotta be the first to four. It’s hard to play your best baseball everyday when you’re seemingly facing an ace every playoff game, but Tito will have the Tribe playing loose, which is a distinct advantage. Unlike that team from the north side of Chicago who just so happens to be best team in baseball and look tighter than the b-holes they are clinching while they try not to shit down their leg.