The Cleveland Indians’ 5-0 start to Spring Training is quickly becoming a distant memory as the Tribe lost its third straight game 10-0 to the Texas Rangers on Thursday.
There are really few positives that can be taken away from this game. As a team, the Indians were outhit 18 to five, and the Tribe never even really came close to scoring a run.
Zach McAllister really struggled in the contest as the right-hander allowed five runs on seven hits in two innings of work. Many of his pitches were left in the middle of the plate, and Rangers players just teed off on them. His performance was night-and-day different from the performance he had earlier this week when he pitched two innings of no-hit ball while walking one.
On the offensive side of things, the Indians were unable to generate much offense off left-hander Derek Holland as he only allowed three hits and pitched four scoreless innings while striking out two. The Rangers’ bullpen also did its part as the Indians went hitless in the final four frames of the contest.
1. Drew Stubbs — CF-RF (Tyler Holt)
2. Asdrubal Cabrera — SS (Francisco Lindor)
3. Jason Kipnis — 2B (Nate Spears)
4. Nick Swisher — 1B (Brian Jeroloman)
5. Carlos Santana — C (Mike McDade)
6. Mark Reynolds — DH (Yan Gomes)
7. Ryan Raburn — LF (Jeremy Hermida)
8. Lonnie Chisenhall — 3B (Luis Hernandez)
9. Matt Carson — RF-CF (Cedric Hunter)
- Zach McAllister — 2 IP
- Vinnie Pestano — 1 IP
- Daisuke Matsuzaka — 2 IP
- Trevor Bauer — 2 IP
- Fernando Nieve — 1 IP
— Plain and simple, this was an ugly game. The Indians really did not do much of anything right, and the pitching was downright atrocious. It’s hard to say exactly what went wrong with McAllister today, but he labored through two innings, and the results were not pretty. The Tribe had hoped that he would be able to go three innings but since it took him 44 pitches to make it through two innings, the cord was then pulled. Fernando Nieve was not even scheduled to pitch but had to because McAllister was unable to go his allotted time. Hopefully, this was just a hiccup for McAllister and he rebounds in his next contest because this was downright ugly.
— There was some good and bad in Daisuke Matsuzaka’s performance. He did allow two runs in two innings of work, but the runs came on a two-run shot by the Rangers’ Mitch Moreland. Other than that, Matsuzaka pitched okay, but the problem is that his fastball has only been clocked in the 89 mph range this spring. In other words, he’s probably going to be susceptible to giving up a lot of those bombs, and while this was his first home run allowed this spring, it probably will not be his last.
— There are at least two Indians that can be spoken positively about following the contest. Ryan Raburn continued his thing and collected two more hits in three at-bats. Raburn has now gone 8-for-13 this spring, and he has to be considered a frontrunner for one of the Tribe’s two bench openings. Also, Trevor Bauer was outstanding and needed just 24 pitches to pitch two perfect innings while striking out one. No one really knows if he is going to have a legitimate shot to earn a spot in the rotation, but he’s certainly making a strong case early.
— Lonnie Chisenhall was also a bright spot in the contest as the third baseman recorded two hits and has now gone 4-for-11 this spring. It would really be nice to see Chisenhall have a strong spring campaign because he really could be a difference maker for the Tribe during the regular season.
The Indians face a divisional rival, the Chicago White Sox, today at 3:05 p.m. at Goodyear Ballpark. Justin Mastersonis scheduled to get the start and will face off against tough lefty Chris Sale. Left-handers Scott Kazmir and David Huffare also scheduled to pitch for the Indians while Chris Perez and Matt Capps will also see action. This will be Perez’s last appearance before he joins his Team USA teammates on Sunday in preparation for the World Baseball Classic.