Key Players Mixed With Comeback Players Are Keeping The Indians In The Race For A Playoff Spot
The Cleveland Indians currently sit in second place in the American League Central behind the Detroit Tigers and are in fourth place in the Wild Card behind Oakland, Tampa Bay, and Baltimore.
Right now, Key players like Ubaldo Jimenez, Jason Kipnis and Just Masterson are leading the way, but is also surprise contributions from Jason Giambi, and Scott Kazmir that are also keeping them in the race for the playoffs.
With time running out, these players need to continue to lead and more players need to start to step up if this team wants to make the playoffs.
To this point in the season, Jimenez is second on the team with nine wins as Masterson has the most with 14.
Both pitches also find themselves in the top two on the team in ERA – as they both have kept theirs under 4.00.
Leading the team in this category is Masterson with an Earned Run Average of 3.49, Jimenez is right behind him though as he sits at 3.95.
If both of these pitchers keep it up, it would definitely help the team stay in the race.
Out of all Indian players, Jason Kipnis has definitely been the best offensively.
The Second Baseman leads his team in every offensive category as he consistently gets on base, and can hit for some power and knock in runs.
Along with his hitting, Kipnis also leads his team in Stolen Bases as he has not only power, but speed also.
When the lefty isn’t hitting, he is doing his job in the field as a defender.
Kipnis has kept his team in the race so far and will likely continue to do so.
One thing that will definitely help this American League team is the rest of their schedule.
Cleveland has arguably the easiest schedule out of all contenders as they play their last 28 games against the Chicago White Sox, Houston Astros, Minnesota Twins, Kansas City Royals, Baltimore Orioles, and the Detroit Tigers.
The team has a chance to win 18 – 19 out of their last 28 games if they get hot, which would net them 89 – 90 wins on the year, but that might not be enough – with Tampa Bay and Oakland both on pace to win over 90 games.
The Athletics also receive a heavy dose of the Mariners, Astros and Angels in the last month.
Cleveland must hope that the Yankees, Rays and Orioles also all beat up each other up with about a .500 record.
Even though the Orioles, Royals, and Tigers are decent teams it still gives them plenty of time to win games and potentially secure a Wild Card spot.
With only two games left with Detroit and a 7.5 game gap I doubt they could make enough of a comeback to take the division title but I would not be surprised if they came and took the second Wild Card spot.
However, even looking at their easy schedule moving forward I don’t think they can do enough to make the postseason.
With good teams like the Orioles, Athletics, and Rays ahead of them in the Wild Card they just don’t have the depth to push ahead of them.
After their next two games with Detroit, they have a series with Baltimore that will likely decide if the make the playoffs or not.
Even though they only trail Baltimore by half a game I think they need to sweep to stay in the hunt, and if they don’t win the series they are definitely in some trouble moving forward with this season.
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Posted on August 31, 2013, in MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged @danwanser on twitter, al central, AL Wild Card, American league, anaheim angels, baltimore orioles, boston red sox, chicago white sox, cleveland indians, dan wanser, detroit tigers, houston astros, jason giambi, jason kipnis, justin masterson, kansas city royals, minnesota twins, mlb, new york yankees, oakland athletics, playoffs, postseason race, scott kazmir, seattle mariners, tampa bay rays, toronto blue jays, ubaldo jimenez, Upcoming Schedules. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Key Players Mixed With Comeback Players Are Keeping The Indians In The Race For A Playoff Spot.