Player of the Game
To steal a phrase from hockey and bastardize it, Josh Tomlin has been pitching on his head all season. His dominance continued tonight against the A's and it won him his 3rd 'Player of the Game i'n 2011. Tomlin allowed two home runs to David Dejesus, but he didn't let anyone else even get on base until the 8th inning, when he was pulled from the game. Tomlin took the loss, but still managed to earn 3.41 'Player of the Game' points.
There wasn't much good or bad in tonight's game against Oakland, just your typical pitchers duel. Josh Tomlin and Tony Sipp pitched well, combining for 8 innings pitched and only two earned runs allowed (those Dejesus homers). The problem with that was that Trevor Cahill matched them every step of the way, throwing a season high 116 pitches in 7 innings to earn the win.
The whole regular starting lineup started tonight for the first time in the last 7 games. Manny Acta had been pretty consistent with his lineup through the first 20 games, but Travis Hafner's injury combined with a couple of scheduled days off had lead to some lineup shuffling. With Hafner back, I expect Acta to start sending his top 9 out there every day.
Other injury good news is that both Carlos Carrasco and Mitch Talbot are making rehab starts this week and Carrasco could return as soon as next Wednesday.
Josh Tomlin has pitched very well thus far this season, but he does have one major weakness. The long ball. Tomlin has allowed an average of more than one home run per start and has pitched in three games where he allowed two home runs, including each of his last two starts. While it hadn't hurt him prior to tonight, it could be a big deal in the future. Josh Tomlin just has to understand, if he doesn't get every single batter out in a row, he won't necessarily get the win.
It can be really hard to score when you start a rally with two outs and you've only had one extra-base hit in the last two games. I'm just suggesting that maybe the first couple hitters should get on base, then the guys after them can use those outs to move the runners along and possibly score them.
Final Score: Another barn burner;
Cleveland Indians 1
Oakland Athletics 3