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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:10 am 
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Playin with fire, Tito! PLAYING WITH FIRE!

If they are down 2-1 and have to start Trevor Bauer in win or go home game....



ESPN's story...



Corey Kluber is probably the best pitcher in baseball at this moment in time. You've seen the stats! They're awesome. His ERA is under 2.00 since the beginning of June and 1.42 since the beginning of August. Lots of strikeouts, few walks, complete domination.

As a result, Cleveland Indians manager Terry Francona's decision to start Trevor Bauer in Game 1 of the American League Division Series against the wild-card winner (now known to be the New York Yankees) and Kluber in Game 2 seems like a puzzling choice. General rule of thumb: You start your ace in the first game of a series, especially in a short series when winning Game 1 is even more important. The team that wins Game 1 wins best-of-five series 71 percent of the time.

But let's talk our way through this. For now, Francona's announced rotation is Bauer, Kluber, Carlos Carrasco and Josh Tomlin, with Kluber pitching again if the series goes five games.

The first key is understanding that with days off after Games 2 and 4, the Game 1 starter could potentially start Game 4 on three days of rest and the Game 2 starter on the regular four days of rest. In that regard, if the series goes five games, it doesn't really matter if Kluber starts Games 1 and 5 or Games 2 and 5.


There's a method behind Terry Francona's madness in pitching Trevor Bauer over Corey Kluber in Game 1 in the ALDS. David Maxwell/Getty Images
"We wanted to keep Kluber on his day. That was really important to Kluber, and that was really the only way we could do it," Francona said on Tuesday afternoon. "If you’re fortunate enough to win in four, you have your ace ready for the next series.”

Still, that doesn't explain the decision. Bauer is the team's third-best starter behind Kluber and Carrasco.

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1. Francona wants Bauer to start at home. Bauer had a 3.93 ERA at home and 4.54 ERA on the road and saw an even bigger difference in his strikeout-to-walk ratio (4.64 at home, 2.29 on the road). That's also just one season of data. Last year, Bauer was better on the road. Plus, if you wanted to give Bauer a home start, you could still go Kluber in Game 1 and Bauer in Game 2.

2. Obviously, Francona doesn't want Kluber starting on short rest in Game 4, even though he started three times last postseason on short rest due to injuries in the Cleveland rotation. Note the difference in results. On full rest, he allowed no runs in 19⅓ innings. In his three starts on short rest, he allowed seven runs in 15 innings.

3. That, however, still doesn't explain this. To me, it seems the plan is likely that Bauer will start Games 1 and 4. He's known for his rubber arm, and Francona did say that Tomlin would be available out of the bullpen in the first three games. That suggests Francona is not locked into Tomlin starting Game 4.

Remember how loaded this pitching staff is. Mike Clevinger, who had a 3.11 ERA and 137 strikeouts in 121⅔ innings, and Danny Salazar, who had the fourth-highest strikeout rate among all pitchers with at least 100 innings, will be available out of the bullpen. The bullpen is so deep with those two that Nick Goody, Dan Otero and Zach McAllister, who each had an ERA under 3.00, won't even make the division series roster (barring a last-minute change).

With Clevinger and Salazar available for multi-inning stints if needed -- plus Andrew Miller -- Francona doesn't need Bauer to go deep into the game. His plan no doubt is to get two turns through the batting order from Bauer, assuming he's pitching well, and then turn the game over to Clevinger or Salazar, Miller and closer Cody Allen. He can then let Kluber goes as long as necessary in Game 2 without worrying about pitch counts, just as he did last postseason.

The only risk to the plan is if the Indians are trailing in the series after three games, Francona won't have the option of starting Kluber in Game 4. If Francona had gone Kluber-Carrasco-Bauer, he could go Kluber on short rest and then Carrasco on regular rest. The Indians clearly have mapped this out and decided Kluber isn't going to start on short rest.

The key is that no situation is going to catch Francona off guard. We saw this last postseason. In the postseason, too many managers are reacting midstream to the action on the field. The Indians had a clear plan heading into each game; even when Bauer's bloody pinkie forced him to leave Game 2 of the ALCS after two outs, Francona was ready with his stream of relievers, going with a short reliever in Otero, even in the first inning.

Now, there's a chance this could all backfire. If Bauer pitches poorly in both games, or Bauer and Tomlin pitch poorly and the Indians don't even get to a Game 5, this rotation order will be questioned. But if the Indians wrap it up in four games or fewer, then they are lined up in the ALCS -- Kluber in Game 1, Carrasco in Game 2.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:37 am 
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Bruce Levine was talking about this on M&H about an hour ago. He said he had heard that Kluber had something going on physically, so they wanted him on a little bit of extra rest.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:44 am 
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Frank Coztansa wrote:
Bruce Levine was talking about this on M&H about an hour ago. He said he had heard that Kluber had something going on physically, so they wanted him on a little bit of extra rest.

LeVine is guessing.

Clearly, they are trying to not use him on short rest but there is truth in "it's a race to 3"


Theyll probably be fine but what if they lose Game 1, win Game 2 and then drop 3 and 4?


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:11 am 
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I agree, they won't have a hard time beating up on NY but this decision is puzzling.. Gotta go Kluber game 1.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:14 am 
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My best guess is they are looking past the Yanks and can have Kluber go game 1 next series.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:39 am 
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pittmike wrote:
My best guess is they are looking past the Yanks and can have Kluber go game 1 next series.



Maybe, but couldn't you toss Kluber game one in both series..assuming the Yanks don't take it 5.


I'm guessing he's banking on the bullpen rescuing the starter in game one..rest the pen in game 2 and then a day off travel day so pen is ready for work in game 3.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:48 am 
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They want Kluber to pitch every 5 days and stay on his routine.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 10:51 am 
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rogers park bryan wrote:
They want Kluber to pitch every 5 days and stay on his routine.




They can't publicly say my theory, Kluber pitched great on short rest last year.. No? Dude almost single handedly took down the mighty Cub.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 11:44 am 
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312player wrote:
rogers park bryan wrote:
They want Kluber to pitch every 5 days and stay on his routine.




They can't publicly say my theory, Kluber pitched great on short rest last year.. No? Dude almost single handedly took down the mighty Cub.

No, he was dominant on regular rest and just good on 3 days. Cubs slapped him all over the park in Game 7.

Regular rest
IP 19 1/3
O ER

3 days rest
IP 15
7 ER

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 11:46 am 
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pittmike wrote:
My best guess is they are looking past the Yanks and can have Kluber go game 1 next series.

Lou Piniella says 'hi'.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:26 pm 
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This is a really stupid decision. Normally, I would never cheer for the Yankees, but now I am simply to see this blow up in Francona's face. Bad move.


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:52 pm 
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Is it any more stupid than Maddon starting Lester in game 2? Experience be dammed, Hendricks & Quintana are your two best pitchers, so they should go 1-2.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 12:59 pm 
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Frank Coztansa wrote:
Is it any more stupid than Maddon starting Lester in game 2? Experience be dammed, Hendricks & Quintana are your two best pitchers, so they should go 1-2.

Yes, it is.

The difference between Kluber and Bauer is bigger than Quintana/Lester. Also the difference between starting Game 1 and Game 2 is a lot bigger than Game 2 or Game 3.

Also, he probably wants Lester available out of the pen for Game's 4 and 5

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 1:39 pm 
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wdelaney72 wrote:
This is a really stupid decision. Normally, I would never cheer for the Yankees, but now I am simply to see this blow up in Francona's face. Bad move.

Same


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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:00 pm 
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rogers park bryan wrote:
312player wrote:
rogers park bryan wrote:
They want Kluber to pitch every 5 days and stay on his routine.




They can't publicly say my theory, Kluber pitched great on short rest last year.. No? Dude almost single handedly took down the mighty Cub.

No, he was dominant on regular rest and just good on 3 days. Cubs slapped him all over the park in Game 7.

Regular rest
IP 19 1/3
O ER

3 days rest
IP 15
7 ER



Okay, then it makes sense.. The guy is virtually unbeatable on regular rest.. I thought he killed is in game one, was very good in game 2 and got shellacked in his 3rd start( out of gas)

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:42 pm 
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Tito > RPB

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 04, 2017 7:07 pm 
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Walt Williams Neck wrote:
Tito > RPB

I'm not the one riding a 3 game losing streak in the post season.


He's one of, if not thee best manager in baseball, I just think it's risky.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 11:01 am 
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Game 2 CC Sabathia vs Corey Kluber



Cy Young vs Cy Old. Reminiscent of Maddux vs Prior in 2003

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:15 pm 
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I think Bauer is the game 1 starter because the have fully rested bullpen. Miller can probably go 3 tonight. In game 5, Kluber will be able to relieve multiple innings. It's kind of a smart move by Francona.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:37 pm 
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Sounds like outsmarting himself.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 7:00 pm 
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MartyD47 wrote:
I think Bauer is the game 1 starter because the have fully rested bullpen. Miller can probably go 3 tonight. In game 5, Kluber will be able to relieve multiple innings. It's kind of a smart move by Francona.

No he'll be starting Game 5


Bauer looks good early. He's no slouch...

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 7:51 pm 
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Bauer is dominating, looking like a good move by Tito

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 8:36 pm 
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:lol: Really. It would have been awesome if a reporter had questioned it, and Tito had said kind of off-the-cuff " oh Bauer isgoing to throw a no-hitter in game 1"

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 8:39 pm 
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wdelaney72 wrote:
This is a really stupid decision. Normally, I would never cheer for the Yankees, but now I am simply to see this blow up in Francona's face. Bad move.



Image


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 8:46 pm 
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2 parts to this working

1 Bauer pitches well and Indians Win tonight which is looking good

2 Indians avoid a 2-1 deficit (no kluber for game 4 elimination game)

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 8:49 pm 
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Maddon would have been called a genius for doing this.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 9:06 pm 
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Chus wrote:
Maddon would have been called a genius for doing this.

Announcers currently throwing bouquets at Francona

He gets a lot of love

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 9:07 pm 
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Chus wrote:
Maddon would have been called a genius for doing this.

Playoff baseball to enjoy and your mind is on the Cubs and Maddon.

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 9:08 pm 
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Yeah, Tito is never left looking for praise many announcers. And he generally has earned it and deserves it.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 05, 2017 9:12 pm 
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Chus wrote:
Maddon would have been called a genius for doing this.




You sound like Pittmike

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