CLEVELAND, Ohio – If Francisco Lindor is tired of swinging a bat for a living, he may have a future in standing comedy.
After Saturday night’s 3-0 loss to the Twins, a loss that brought the Indians’ batting average down to .206 (57 for 277), Lindor was asked if there was anything of specific that the pitchers did to confuse him and his teammates. nine games in the MLB 60-game sprint.
“They’re just throwing the baseball,” Lindor said. “They pitch baseball and we went out. This is what they are doing now. If they throw something at me and I go out.
But really Frankie (prepare the rim shot) how badly do you swing the bat?
“They could throw out a bag of rosin now and I would probably bring it up,” Lindor said.
This from a guy who had one of two Indian hits in Saturday’s loss. Lindor is hitting .222 (8 for 36) with two homers and six RBIs. These aren’t good numbers for the four-time All-Star, but on an Indian team averaging 2.78 points per game, they look garish.
“We just have to compete, compete, compete and make adjustments,” Lindor said. “If we don’t make adjustments as Big League hitters, we’re not going anywhere. I’m one of those guys. It takes me longer to make adjustments and I am very responsible for it. We have to make adjustments. “
Right-hander Kenta Maeda, taking on the Indians for the first time, threw them a steady diet of sliders and changes, with an occasional fastball. The Indians kept standing out.
The Indians are 5-4 and have slipped to third place at AL Central behind the Twins and Tigers. Nine games in a normal season that wouldn’t be a problem. But this season is already 15% over and if the Indians are to be a factor – assuming they avoid the coronavirus and the season is over – they have to start scoring runs.
Carlos Santana, Franmil Reyes and Domingo Santana can’t just take up space in the middle of the roster. They have to produce. Right now they’re hitting a combined .200 (15 for 75) with one homerun and five RBIs.
“It doesn’t really matter how long the season is,” said manager Terry Francona. “We are in August now. This is how you treat it. We have to sprint to the finish regardless of the length of the season. We try to get the games under our belt quickly so the guys can get comfortable, but there are five teams that are really very tight in our division.
The only Indian player who looks like home plate is Jose Ramirez. He reached .375 (12 in 32) with two home runs and five RBIs. Ramirez reached # 2 and Lindor’s # 3 in the lineup. Everyone in baseball knows that if these two don’t hit, Indians aren’t going anywhere, even with an expanded playoff series. Especially since they do not receive any help from the lower third of the formation.
Francona’s last three hitters are .108 (9 for 83) with a homerun and five RBIs in nine games. In the last four games, they are 1 in 37.
In that regard, could there be too much pressure on Ramirez and Lindor to carry the roster in such a drastically changed season?
“No, not at all,” Lindor said. “It’s a team sport and all the players on the roster can play the game really well. We just happen to get caught in this streak where seven or eight batters are struggling and you have the only hitter (Ramirez ) who is not.
“Usually you have three or four hitters doing really well and the rest of them struggling. Right now we’re in this state where 7 or 8 batters aren’t doing what they’re supposed to.
Lindor thinks the Indians are going to strike as long as they try to adapt.
“We can strike. We were doing it in a summer camp, ”he said. “We were doing it in spring training. We’ve shown signs of what we can do, but like I said, if we don’t make adjustments, if I don’t make adjustments not after step, I won’t be successful.
Adjustments are one thing. The time it takes to make them is something completely different, because in a 60 game season the time expires much faster than in 162 games.
“I’m excited about what the future is going to look like here in Cleveland with the pitching staff and the batting staff,” said Lindor. “The hitters we have are really good. They’re young, but once we start making the adjustments faster, we’ll be really good. Maybe it’s tomorrow, maybe it’s next March. Whenever it does, I hope it’s quick.
New Indian masks for sale: Here’s where you can purchase Cleveland Indian-themed face coverings for coronavirus protection, including a single mask ($ 14.99) and a 3-pack ($ 24.99). All MLB profits are donated to charity.
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