First, with the bad news, Grady Sizemore is out for the season after having micro fracture surgery on his left knee. I don’t want to sound callous here, but is this really a loss? Potentially, it could have been, but Sizemore had been a carcass of his former self this year, and was showing no signs of coming out of his funk. Yes, potentially he could have returned to form and done his usual “lead by example” bit for the young players. But did anyone who saw Sizemore play in April and early May really think he was going to just snap out of it? Maybe this is for the best, as he can get himself all sorted out and be back during Spring Training next year.
This widens the door for Trevor Crowe to entrench himself on this roster. Crowe looked like he had seen his last days with the Tribe when he was sent down to Columbus at the start of the season in favor of Michael Brantley. Brantley struggled, and Crowe has been, well, OK, despite his recent slump. Crowe has an OBP of .299 (which isn’t good) but he’s been playing decent defense, and he’s showing more power than Brantley did, with four extra base hits. I’m not sure Trevor Crowe has a future with this club (or in baseball), but he has a legit shot now to prove he does, and that he’s not just another first round failure.
I hate the wins pitching statistic, so I’m not going to praise Justin Masterson for finally getting a W this year. He pitched well, going 5.2 with only a solo home run to Alexei Ramirez blemishing those innings, so it’s not like he got a junk win. I just hate the stat. It tells you nothing about how a pitcher performed, only if they were around when their team got the lead. They are far too team dependent and thus not a good indicator (or really, any indicator) of a pitcher’s overall abilities. /rant
Still, I have to wonder how much life Masterson really has given himself with his last two starts. His ERA is still 5.46 in 59.1 IP. His WHIP is 1.82 and opponents are hitting .311 off him. This doesn’t cover up how bad he’s really been. I still don’t think he should be in the starting rotation, although I will admit the Indians don’t really have too many other options, and right now the mess that is David Huff would probably be sent down first. So Masterson will live to pitch another start, and I will continue to hope that I’m wrong about him.
The Indians promoted RHP Frank Herrmann from Columbus and designated Jamey Wright for assignment. Herrmann’s numbers at Columbus became impossible to ignore (0.31 ERA in 28.2 IP!) and Wright was roster filler anyway (5.48 ERA in 18 appearances). Herrmann pitched an inning and a third and earned a hold(whoopee!) in last night’s game. Hopefully Herrmann can provide some much needed relief to this relief corp. As is, Herrmann is a nice story, an undrafted free agent out of Harvard who made it to the big leagues. Congrats, Frank. Don’t earn my ire.