With a week away, I thought I'd get some Quick Hits in:
- At the ChiSox game last Tuesday (which I attended), they drew 18,000! They have the best record in the majors and a 7-0 Jon Garland was going, but fans are more concerned about the woes of the Cubs than they are with the hot start by the South Siders.
- My buddies from Minnesota, who I sat with, still think that the Central will come down to the Twins and the Tribe. The consensus in both camps remains (as it has for over a month) that the White Sox cannot keep this up. WHEN (not if) they fall apart, the Twins are in a great position to barrel right past them. The Indians need to position themselves similarly. As a side note, this conversation did not make us popular guys in the 3rd Base Field Boxes.
- US Cellular Field is located in Beirut. I've never been so scared to walk 500 yards from my car to a stadium (with Chicago's "Finest" in sight at all times) than I was after I dropped $18 to park as close as humanly possible. There were cops on ATV's after the game controlling the crowds! It was like a scene from Mad Max. I was half-waiting for Tina Turner to come over the loudspeakers with "We Don't Need Another Hero".
- True to White Sock Fan stereotype, a drunk fat guy whipped his shirt off in the 8th inning. With his body covered in tatoos, he implored the crowd to get fired up. As the Security Staff came swarming, the crowd egged him on, forcing him to remove his skullcap, then chug 2 full beers. To his credit, he did not charge the field and attack a coach.
Enough about the Sox, on to our beloved Erie Warriors:
- Games from now until June 5th are going to determine a lot about the 2005 season for the Indians in the Central. After 4 against the Twins in Minnesota and 3 more at the Jake with the A's, it's off for 3 game sets in Minnesota, then Chicago. If the Tribe can piece together a hot stretch, they can make up some serious games in the Central, and not continue to be 10-12 games back.
- They've won 4 out of their last 6 series. As I've said before, I don't know if this team is a team that just rattles off 10 in a row, so this is what we're going to have to do- inch our way back into it and hope that the leaders go ice cold. What's needed though is to take 3 of 4 in long series and get one or two sweeps in the month of June.
- We all wondered where Jody Gerut would fit in. As has often been said, things in baseball just work themselves out. With Coco in Baltimore seeing a hand specialist, we'll see if Joseph Diego (Jody) can recapture the success of his Rookie season. So far, I've been encouraged.
- Now we wonder where (or if) Gonzo will fit in, then Ludwick goes shoulder first into the fence. Baseball has a funny way of working this stuff out.
- As was hoped, Davis went to Buffalo. However, they did so to keep him as a starter!?! Hoynes described the Indians' handling of Davis as "unusual". That's being diplomatic.
- I still don't like the makeup of the lineup, but can't figure out what I would like to see as an everyday lineup. C.C batting 3rd or 4th? Any ideas?
- When FSN introduces the Indians' defense, they show a picture of the lawyers of Elk & Elk (those 2 elves from the front of the Yellow Pages) while Hegan says, "let's take a look at the Tribe defense". The timing of it is hilarious.
- The Reds CUT Danny Graves and his mullett after yesterday's meltdown. Who's got the itchy trigger finger over there? Rather than demote your closer to a bullpen pitcher to build some confidence, you just cut him? I realize that he made an obscene gesture to a fan, but this is in the same town that Rob Dibble (he who launched a ball over the center field fence, striking a woman's chest AND attacked his manager in the clubhouse) thrived.
I'll be down at the park tomorrow night. Hopefully it's over 4o degrees. Seriously, it's almost June.