Each week this season, we’ll be recapping the previous week’s games, news, and trivia. Here’s a look at how the Indians have started off the season (just like in fantasy baseball, we’re lumping all the action to date into Week 1).
Overall, the Indians went 4-4 against the Blue Jays, White Sox, and Royals.
Game One: Blue Jays 7, Indians 4
The season started with a 16-inning Opening Day loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, April 5th. All looked well at the start as the Tribe jumped out to an early 4-0 lead and Justin Masterson was in command through eight innings. Heading into the ninth with a 4-1 lead, Manny Acta handed the ball to Chris Perez to close out what should have been the Indians’ first win of the season. Perez blew the lead, sending the game into extras with the score knotted up at 4-4. The Indians were unable to plate a run in the next seven innings, and in the top of the 16th the Blue Jays crossed the plate three times to beat the Tribe, 7-4. (full recap here)
Game Two: Blue Jays 7, Indians 4
The second game was another 7-4 extra-inning loss to the Blue Jays. Ubaldo Jimenez got the start and looked great through most of the game, taking a perfect game into the sixth and a no-hitter into the seventh. The Indians’ offense was also being no-hit until Jason Kipnis unleashed a two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth. Asdurbal Cabrera’s home run in the bottom of the ninth, tied the game at 3-3 and the teams went to extras again. This time, the game lasted only 12 innings, but the Indians lost again Jays scored thrice in the top of the twelfth. (full recap here)
Game Three: Indians 4, Blue Jays 3
Game three was more encouraging as the Indians ended the three-game series with the Blue Jays with the Tribe’s first win of the season. It was a big day for Carlos Santana, who connected for two home runs on his 26th birthday. Derek Lowe continued the trend of strong starting pitching for the Tribe, allowing only one run on five hits through seven solid innings. Chris Perez locked up the win with his first save of the season, albeit in heart-pounding fashion. (full recap here)
Game 4: Chicago White Sox 4, Indians 2
The Indians’ first series with the Chicago White Sox opened on a bad note. The Tribe was trailing 3-0 after only one inning as Josh Tomlin struggled in his first start of the season—he allowed four runs on seven hits with one walk in five innings. Tomlin wasn’t the only one struggling, as the offense continued its teamwide slump. The Indians’ only runs came Santana’s sixth-inning RBI single and Jose Lopez‘ solo shot in the ninth. (full recap here)
What should have been the fifth game of the season was postponed due to inclement weather on Tuesday, April 10th.
Game 5: White Sox 10, Indians 6
The Indians’ bats finally came out in this game as the Tribe scored six runs, but it was no match for the White Sox, who had ten runs cross the plate. Shelley Duncan had a strong day at the plate, going 3-for-5 with a home run; Travis Hafner also went yard. Masterson struggled on the mound, allowing five runs (three earned) on eight hits with one walk in only five innings. (full recap here)
Game 6: Indians 8, Royals 3
W: Derek Lowe, L: Luke Hochevar
The Indians returned to action on Friday in Kansas City, recording their second win of the season behind a strong start from Lowe. Lowe allowed three runs on eleven hits through 6.2 innings. The Indians’ offense came alive for the second game in a row with eight runs on the evening—seven of which came in the first inning. (full recap here)
Game 7: Indians 11, Royals 9
Saturday’s game in Kansas City marked the first time in 2012 that the Indians would win back-to-back games. As with the game on Friday night, the offense was on fire and the pitching was less than perfect. Gomez’s start was cut short after he (along with Jack Hannahan and Manny Acta) was ejected early in the third inning. The Indians were in control for most of the game, but the Royals chipped away at the lead until the teams were tied in the ninth, 9-9. The game went into extra innings, but this time the Tribe came out on top after Shin-Soo Choo‘s two-run doubled scored Michael Brantley and Jason Kipnis to put Cleveland ahead, 11-9.
Game 8: Indians 13, Royals 7
The Indians brought out the brooms Sunday to complete the sweep of the Royals with a 13-7 win. Jimenez struggled in his second outing of the season, looking like a completely different pitcher than the one we saw in his first start. The offense was there to back him up, though, as four Indians homered to cap a slugfest of a series. (full recap here)