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Indians Indians Archive Morning Rundown: Masty Leaves Loss to O's to Double Tribe Sting
Written by Nino Colla

Nino Colla

MastyHurtWell that was a kick in the teeth. A loss within a loss.

So much for luck turning around. So much for finally breaking the skid. So much for everything.

I mean, not to sound doom and gloom. It isn't over. But man, that hurts.


W: Bud Norris (10-10)

L: Justin Masterson (14-10)


Maybe not as much as it is hurting Justin Masterson right now. Both physically with his injury, and with what I'm sure is some disappointment in not having been able to go out there and tough through it and pitch for his team.

What are you going to do? Your starter goes one inning, pitches to one hitter in the second and has to leave because he's hurt. Talk about stretching your bullpen. If it wasn't before September 1st, who only knows where the pen would be. We saw Tito empty the bag in this one, from Guilmet to Hagadone to Wood, to Rapada and most of the regulars too in Shaw, Albers, and Letters. 

Granted, your offense didn't end up contributing much. Two solo home runs from Jason Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall later in the game, and some hits from Michael Brantley is not going to get the job done, even if Masterson is in there and pitching well. Unless he's pitching flawlessly really.

What we seem to have here is a situation of an offense trying to do too much, at least according to Kipnis, who wasn't afraid to point out the issue with his team's lineup.

"We're digging our own hole right now," Kipnis said. "It's almost like we've been trying too hard, and almost being counterproductive in a way. We want to hit that five-run home run with nobody on. We're just going about it the wrong way and trying to do too much, and it's starting to hurt us. He had a scheduled start against our offense," said a frustrated Kipnis. "He was around the zone for most of the day and he kept the ball down for the most part and got ahead of guys. But, right now, like I said -- jokingly or not -- he's catching us at a good time."

Kip was referring to Orioles starter Bud Norris, who went seven innings and gave up just a solo shot to Kipnis. It would appear as if that is the case. Especially when you look at Asdrubal Cabrera's at-bat at the end of the game. Dude was swinging to hit that five run home run. Almost makes you wonder if Kipnis was talking right to him. This team is definitely trying to do too much, at least some people are. And I think some people are because others aren't.

Bud Norris? Eh, okay. But I think Kipnis is right. This team is doing too much. Classic guy you can't do too much against too. 

As for Masterson. He exited with a "soreness" to the left side of his ribcage. Which can mean anything, which is why I put soreness in quotes. What it will be is anyone's guess, but I'm sure we will find out soon enough. If it is something that causes him to miss a start, okay, that's fine. But I'd imagine it is at least that.

When you are talking about that rib area, my mind immediately thinks far worse than one game, because if that area is tight, it is not something fun pitching with and usually takes some time to loosen up. So in a way, it could be lights out of Masterson, but let's hope worst thoughts are just that, thoughts.

"When I went back out," Masterson said, "it must have tightened up on me, because when I went to try and throw, the balls were not coming out the way I would have liked them to. I couldn't really get through the pitch."

This isn't a finger injury to Kluber or McAllister, or Kazmir getting fatigued, or whatever. This is Justin Masterson, who I don't think has ever had a hang nail, let a lone an issue like this. It's kind of like. What else? What else can happen to throw something in the way of this club? Masterson getting hurt? Of course, because that never ever happens.

And to further that, this isn't Kluber or McAllister. Even if you get Kluber back for the rest of the year, this is Justin Masterson and Jason Kipnis put it the best.

"He's our ace, basically," said second baseman Jason Kipnis, the Tribe's other All-Star. "He's the guy we count on. He's the consistent starter that we can throw out there when we need someone to stop a losing streak, or when we need someone to go out and give a good start for us."

Except for the basically part, haha. We've talked about Masterson being a true ace, but he's at least the Indians ace. He's not so much the ace, but that durable consistent starter that you know will be out there giving you innings.

And that now is in jeopardy...

Random Notes...

The Orioles just needed to hit a few home runs and find the ghost of Brian Roberts, that's all. Didn't that guy like, break down completely? Guess not, because he came up with a huge double off Guilmet to really get the ball rolling. 

First earned runs surrendered by Marc Rzepczynski when he let up a two-run shot to Matt Wieters. To be fair, no other pitcher could really figure Wieters out with his four hits.

Erratic with the two walks, but a scoreless debut and no hits given up by Blake Wood.

I'm not really sure why Clay Rapada is on this roster, but eh whatever.

A recharged Lonnie Chisenhall could do this offense some good. His double and home run gives him four extra base hits in his last four games. Remember that September last year? Chiz has most of his career home runs and RBI in this month. Perhaps it is cue to get it going.

Asdrubal Cabrera, three strikeouts. Yup. 


Corey Kluber will be back, so that's the good news for the rotation. However, as to what limits he has, that is still a rather cloudy subject. Kluber will pitch on Friday. You would think it would be out of the bullpen considering he hasn't actually pitched a major league inning. 

What he did do is throw a simulated game, four innings to be precise. Scott Kazmir is slated to start on Friday and the Indians don't expect him to go rather long, so that's where Kluber could come in and throw a few innings to get him back and going.

Tito and the staff was impressed by what Kluber did in the simulated game.

"He did real well," Tribe manager Terry Francona said, referring to Kluber's sim game. "I don't think he showed any effects. I thought the way he threw the ball today was [impressive]. It's afternoon, after coming back from a road trip. I thought he threw the ball great."

If Masterson is going to miss time, looks like it answers the question as to what it is the Indians do with Josh Tomlin. You want to talk about all hands on deck? Between Salazar and Kluber, no Masterson, Tomlin, Ubaldo, and Kazmir the only guy who you can really count on to get through five innings is Zach McAllister. You can count on Ubaldo lately, but there's always that what if. So really, the Indians will probably have to call up and utilize Trevor Bauer, as well as piggyback guys like Salazar, Kluber, Carrasco, Kazmir, and Tomlin, just so they can get through outings. 

All these guys have to perform though, which is just another thing in addition to all of that. Either way, Tomlin will be added to the roster today and the Indians yesterday were trying to figure out what they were going to do. He had been stretched out, but not exactly to six innings every five days.

"That's something we'll have to work through," Francona said. "We've got him somewhat stretched out. We're going to have to work through that. Because the Minor League seasons are over, there's no more innings to pitch. So we'll definitely bring him here. How and when he pitches, we'll figure that out."

Between all these arms, the Indians should have enough innings, but will they get enough quality innings? Shoot, if the offense doesn't produce, it won't matter all that much. But the Indians should find enough arms to get through the innings. Essentially, it becomes just a giant bullpen of arms. 

Whatever you have to do, right?

Ryan Raburn is doing everything he can do to get back into the lineup. Rakin Raburn was a batter in Kluber's simulated game on Monday and said that while his calf still feels a little sore, he doesn't feel like it is hurting the way he can swing the bat. Still, even if you DH him, he's gotta run if he makes contact and the ball stays in the park, so that would have a little something to do with him playing.

It appears Raburn will come off the disabled list, because roster's are expanded and it isn't as if they need the roster space for someone else. The question becomes how soon after he's activated will he get to play.

"There's not really a reason not to bring him off the disabled list," Francona said. "Whether he gets in a game or not, we have extra bodies. If he can hit, we can pinch-run. I would anticipate that, yeah, [Tuesday would] probably be the case."

The Indians could really use the spark Ryan Raburn has given them this year. The guy hits any time he is in the lineup and right now, the lineup needs to hit. 

The lineup needs to hit badly. Raburn can't save it, but she sure can help spark it. All hands on deck? All hands on deck...


Nino is in full baseball mode here and on The Tribe Daily, his own Indians blog. Don't miss all the fun, photoshopped Indians players, and LOLTribe ridiciulousness.

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