The wins continue to roll in for the Cleveland Indians as the Tribe defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-0 to win their third straight game on Wednesday.
Pitching played a huge part in the win as right-hander Justin Masterson pitched four shutout innings and allowed just three hits and struck out three. The performance was especially nice to see considering Masterson allowed four earned runs in 2 1/3 innings of work in his outing last Friday.
- Drew Stubbs — CF (Cedric Hunter)
- Jason Kipnis — 2B (Nate Spears)
- Mark Reynolds — 1B (Jeremy Hermida)
- Yan Gomes — C (Omir Santos)
- Jason Giambi — DH (Mike McDade)
- Ben Francisco — LF (Tim Fedroff)
- Matt Carson — RF (Chris McGuiness)
- Lonnie Chisenhall — 3B (Luis Hernandez)
- Ryan Rohlinger — SS
- Justin Masterson
- Rich Hill
- Nick Hagadone
- Scott Barnes
- Preston Guilmet
- Matt Langwell
— It’s been said that the Indians’ chances of competing this year rest on Justin Masterson and fellow right-handerUbaldo Jimenez. So far, both players started the spring with solid outings and then had a poor one. However, Masterson made his third appearance of the spring Wednesday, and it was nice to see that he was able to put the poor outing behind him. Still, his performance does beg the question: What’s next? Will Masterson go out and build off his stellar outing, or will he again scuffle and be prone to the big inning? Spring games are ultimately meaningless, but I think I speak for every Indians fan when I say it would be nice to see some consistency from Masterson and Jimenez. Let’s hope that Wednesday was the start of that. We’ll get a chance to see how Jimenez rebounds from his tough outing in today’s contest.
— How good has Nick Hagadone looked this spring? Well, to be exact, the left-hander has now thrown four shutout innings in four games while striking out seven and walking just one. I will admit that I had been more bullish on Scott Barnes as of late, but Hagadone is starting to change my mind. He is clearly a front-runner for one of the open spots in the Indians bullpen, and he could be an exciting player to watch this year. The stuff is there. Now, let’s just hope that he learned from last year’s mental hiccup.
— Yan Gomes has now gone 7-for-17 this spring with three doubles, a home run and six RBI. He’s been getting a lot more playing time than regular backup catcher Lou Marson, which could mean two things. 1. The Indians are actually looking at Gomes as a viable candidate to open season as the team’s backup catcher or 2. The team has already decided Marson will be the backup, but they’re determined to get a close, hard look at Gomes to see what the future may hold. I’ll go with the latter, but it’s still nice to see that Gomes is taking full advantage of his regular playing time.
— Rich Hill does not get talked about too much, but it does seem as if he could be a candidate to make the Indians’ bullpen. In five games and 4 2/3 innings of work, Hill has allowed five hits, no earned runs while striking out seven and walking three. He is by no means a flamethrower, but he does own an 8.2 K/9 rate for his career. That’s not too shabby, and it would not be a huge surprise if Hill and Hagadone are the two left-handers that earn spots in the Tribe’s bullpen.
— Jason Giambi recorded his first hit of the spring on Wednesday. The 42-year-old seems to be a lock to make the team, and he definitely could make for a nice clubhouse leader. Still, am I the only one that’s concerned with the fact that he’s gone 1-for-13 this spring while often facing inferior pitching?