Series Preview: Indians vs. Angels

Another series, another sweep. The Indians are playing some really good baseball and it has been fun to watch. They did just what they needed to do against a struggling Mariners team. And to top it off, they are in first place in the American League Central! Asdrubal Cabrera looks like he’s fully healthy and Travis Hafner has been hitting the ball very hard.  Now it’s on to Anaheim to continue the streak!

April 11-13

Angels Stadium of Anaheim

Scouting Report

  • Anaheim – First off, I’m not calling them the “Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.”  The Angels have a bit of momentum coming into this series after taking two of three from the Blue Jays. Luckily the Indians won’t be seeing Jared Weaver in this series, because he has been lights out for the Angels with a 3-0 record and a microscopic 0.87 ERA, and had a career high 15 strikeouts in his last outing. After getting swept on opening weekend at the hands of the Kansas City Royals this club has rebounded nicely by winning four out of it’s last five.
  • Indians – The Tribe is seemingly doing everything right. They are hitting, playing sound defense and their pitching has been rock solid. If the Indians get a lead, watch out. The 7-8-9th inning combination of Rafael Perez, Tony Sipp and close Chris Perez has been dominant. Through his first five innings of the season, Sipp has allowed just one baserunner and has been credited with five holds. Closer Chris Perez is also 4 for 4 in save opportunities this season. Some nights the offense leads, others the pitching staff and defense leads as evidence by the 1-0 win over the Red Sox and the 12 run outpouring against the Mariners. They are off to their best start in nearly ten years and will look to keep it rolling.

Pitching Match-up(s)

Game 1: Mitch Talbot vs. Tyler Chatwood

  • Mitch Talbot  0-0, 4.15 ERA

Talbot threw a lot of pitches in his last outing, 102 to be exact. That all came in just 4 1/3 innings. But he was effective in giving up just two runs on five hits. He also fanned seven and kept a powerful Boston lineup off balance the whole evening. Yes he didn’t win, but he kept the Tribe in it until a four run sixth that put the Tribe ahead for good.

  • Tyler Chatwood  0-0, -,– ERA

Chatwood has only pitched in one inning for Salt Lake this season, but Mike Scioscia said he is “one of the young arms we are excited about.” He’ll make his first Major League start after going 13-9 with a 2.84 ERA in the Minors in 2010. A second-round pick from the 2008 draft, Chatwood earned the promotion despite having only 6 2/3 innings of Triple-A experience. He was the organization’s minor league pitcher of the year last season.

Game 2: Fausto Carmona vs. Dan Haren

  • Fausto Carmona  0-1, 9.00 ERA

Fausto’s two starts this season have been as opposite ends of the spectrum as you can imagine. After allowing ten runs on eleven hits in three innings of work on opening day, he tossed seven scoreless innings while allowing two hits and striking out four. Hopefully this version of Fausto is here to stay.

  • Dan Haren  2-0, 1.15 ERA

Haren has been nothing short of dominant in two starts this season, as evidence from his record and ERA but he has had pinpoint accuracy thus far as well.In 15 2/3 innings, he has 13 strikeouts and no walks, mixing his splitter, cutter, breaking ball and commanding fastball. He was also thrust into some relief work in the Angel’s 14 innings debacle against the Blue Jays which caused his start to be pushed back one day, hopefully that arm is still a bit rusty against the Tribe bats that have been rather hot as of late.

Game 3: Carlos Carrasco vs. Ervin Santana

  • Carlos Carrasco  1-1, 5.68 ERA

Carrasco followed suit with Carmona in turning his fortunes around in his second start of the season. He allowed just one run on four hits over six strong innings against the Mariners. He also had ample run support as the Tribe belted out 17 hits and 12 runs in the game.

  • Ervin Santana  0-1, 3.68 ERA

Santana is coming off of a 17- win season last year, but hasn’t had the run support he had at his disposal last season. ad the kind of offensive support he received last year. His command is solid, and his slider has been especially effective along with his 91-94-mph heater.

Probable Lineups

Cleveland

1. CF Michael Brantley

2. SS Asdrubal Cabrera

3. RF Shin-Soo Choo

4. C  Carlos Santana

5. DH Travis Hafner

6. 2B Orlando Cabrera

7. LF Austin Kearns

8. 1B Matt LaPorta

9. 3B Jack Hannahan

Anaheim

1. SS Maicer Izturis

2. 2B Howie Kendrick

3. DH / RF Bobby Abreu

4. RF/ DH Torii Hunter

5. LF Vernon Wells

6. 3B  Alberto Callaspo

7. 1B Mark Trumbo

8. C   Bo Wilson

9 CF Peter Bourjos

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