The Indians are set to play their second and final night game of the spring tonight at Goodyear Ballpark against the defending A.L. Champion Texas Rangers – tune in live on any station across the Indians Radio Network or WTAM & WMMS in Cleveland. If you’re near a computer, you can also stream the game through an online webcast at Indians.com.
The Tribe went 59-51 in night games last season, while tonight’s scheduled starter, Justin Masterson, went 10-4 with a 2.99 ERA (46 ER/138.1 IP) in 22 games/21 starts under the lights in 2011.
Here’s tonight’s lineup card from the clubhouse…
Hey guys – just wanted to give you an update from here in Goodyear. GM Chris Antonetti just announced to our local media that RHP Jeanmar Gomez has earned a spot on the Indians Opening Day roster as the team’s fifth starter to begin the season. Jeanmar has pitched extremely well this spring, posting a 1.37 ERA (3 ER/19.2 IP) over 6 appearances/3 starts for the Tribe and showing really impressive composure on the mound for a 24-year-old. Opponents are batting just .188 (13-69) with 14 strikeouts against him in Cactus League play. Jeanmar left his start yesterday against Cincinnati with 2 outs in the third inning after mildly straining his right hip on a play at first base (made a pretty athletic stretch to complete the back end of a doubleplay), but by all accounts, the staff doesn’t seem concerned about his ability to take the mound for his first turn through the rotation. Manny’s scheduled to talk to the writers here in the next half-hour or so and I will pass along what he has to say.
In a corresponding move, Chris also announced that right-handers Frank Herrman and Kevin Slowey have both been optioned to Triple-A Columbus to begin the year, which leaves the Indians with 32 players in Major League camp.
UPDATE (8:25PM ET): Manny touched on a few items during his pre-game media session…
*On Jeanmar Gomez earning the fifth spot in the rotation: Manny talked about how impressed the staff was by his performance this spring, particularly that his focus was not affected by the fact that his first 3 appearances this spring came in relief. Some pitchers who are used to starting can have difficulty coming into a game that’s already in progress. Manny also pointed out that the team has a couple off days in early April that will allow the team to skip Jeanmar’s spot the first time through the rotation and give him extra time to get his hip back to 100%.
*Reminded everyone that the organization sees both Frank and Kevin as vital pieces to the team’s overall pitching depth – it’s a long season.
*Mentioned that the Indians final roster decisions (bullpen, bench roles) would likely be announced at some point tomorrow
“Fly, fight and win!” – that’s the official mission of the United States Air Force. For one day this week however, a mix of 10 pilots and crewmen from nearby Luke Air Force Base (308 & 309 Units) had the opportunity to catch, hit and throw with the Cleveland Indians. As part of an on-going military outreach program at the organization’s development complex here in Goodyear (AZ), the Indians invited the group to participate in Thursday morning’s batting practice workout to demonstrate the team’s appreciation for their service to our country. The visitors from LAFB had the opportunity to shag fly balls in the outfield and take a few swings in the cage, while mixing it up with Indians players, coaches and front office staff members. While the sides could be overheard discussing some similarities shared between the two career paths – namely long hours, extensive travel and time spent away from family – events such as this remind you that the sacrifices made by our service men and women are unparalleled and it was really rewarding to see them enjoy such a unique baseball experience. As luck would have it, TribeVibe even ran into a Cleveland native in Captain Eric “Irok” Stano. “This has been unbelievable,” said Stano. “Best vacation I’ve ever heard of.”
The Indians lost to the Reds by a score of 6-5 this afternoon at Goodyear Ballpark in a game that saw Cleveland relinquish a 5-1 lead in the bottom of the 8th inning.
CARLOS SANTANA (2nd inning) and ASDRUBAL CABRERA (4th inning) both connected for solo home runs to provide JEANMAR GOMEZ with an early 2-0 advantage. The Tribe have combined to hit 5 home runs over the last 2 days. Jeanmar permitted just 2 hits with 4 strikeouts over 3.2 scoreless frames before exiting in the 4th with a mild right hip strain. The injury occurred as Jeanmar stretched to receive a throw at first base while successfully completing the back end of a double play. Today’s outing lowered his spring ERA to 1.37, as the right-hander has surrendered just 3 runs over 19.2 innings with opponents batting .188 (13-69). Cincinnati tallied one run in the 5th, but the Tribe responded with a 3-spot in the 7th on FELIX PIE’s pinch-hit RBI-single and a 2-run double by JOSE LOPEZ to grab a 5-1 advantage. That lead would stand until the bottom of the 8th when the Reds combined for 5 runs on 5 hits off DAN WHEELER, including 3 homers by TODD FRAZIER, JUAN FRANCISCO and RYAN LaMARRE. LaMarre’s 2-run shot provided the Reds’ first lead and the game’s decisive tally.
Cleveland will host Texas tomorrow night at Goodyear Ballpark for a 7:05PM MST/10:05 ET first pitch in what is to be the Indians second and final night game of the spring. Right-handers JUSTIN MASTERSON and NEFTALI FELIZ are scheduled to start that game, which will be aired live on WTAM, WMMS, the Indians Radio Network and through an online webcast at Indians.com.
Here is an article by Julie Wilson of baseballhall.org about Sister Mary Assumpta and her love for the Indians over the past few decades. Be sure to click the link below to check out the story on one of the Tribe’s biggest fans.
“COOPERSTOWN, N.Y. – The role of fans in the game of baseball cannot be overstated.
Fans drive the game with their spirit, dedication and support (both emotional and financial) of their favorite teams and players. While we are so often reminded of the great players and personalities that have shaped the game on the field, in the front office and from the broadcast booth, it is the faithful fans who support their teams through the ups and downs that have established baseball as our nation’s pastime.
Although the City of Cleveland has no shortage of diehard baseball fans, there are certainly a few who stand out from the crowd.”
To read the rest of the article click here.
Goodyear, AZ – Good afternoon everyone, just wanted to pass along some breaking roster moves passed along by Indians GM Chris Antonetti a few minutes ago. Chris announced that INF JASON DONALD and RHP DAN WHEELER have both been told that they will make the Indians Opening Day 25-man roster. Jason went 4-for-5 with a pair of doubles yesterday to raise his spring average to .293 (12-41), while Dan has posted scoreless efforts in each of his last 5 relief appearances for the Tribe with opponents going just 4-for-17 (.235) in that span. C MATT PAGNOZZI, INF GREGORIO PETIT and OF FELIX PIE have all been told that they will not make the Opening Day roster, but will remain in Major League camp for the time being. The front office has also decided to exercise a retention bonus to keep INF JOSE LOPEZ in Major League camp, a move required by a new provision in the CBA for a certain classification of Major League free agents (’20b’) who sign Minor League contracts. If Jose does not break camp with the Indians, he will start the season at Triple-A Columbus. Dan also fell into this classification of Major League agents, but was informed of making the team prior to the required deadline (5 days before the start of the season).
Our Baseball Operations Dept. also announced that the club has reduced the roster by seven (7) additional players. INF RUSS CANZLER and LHP NICK HAGADONE have both been optioned to the Triple-A Columbus Clippers. C LUKE CARLIN, INF ANDY LaROCHE, RHP CHRIS RAY, LHP CHRIS SEDDON and RHP ROBINSON TEJEDA have all been re-assigned to minor league camp. There are currently 34 players remaining in Major League spring training camp (27 on 40-man, 7 non-roster invitees).
The Indians lost a pair of split squad games today, falling 6-3 to the Colorado Rockies at Goodyear Ballpark and 5-4 to the Arizona Diamondbacks at Talking Stick in Scottsdale.
In the home game, Colorado plated a pair of runs in the 1st inning off Tribe starter DEREK LOWE (3.0IP, 3H, 2R/ER) on a MARCO SCUTARO sac fly and an RBI-single from RAMON HERNANDEZ before plating 3 more runs in the 4th inning, which included a 2-run double by CHRIS NELSON. Minor league first baseman BEAU MILLS hit a pair of solo home runs for Cleveland, going 3-for-3 with a double and a walk, while MICHAEL BRANTLEY added a solo shot in the 3rd, his first of the spring, off Rockies starter JUAN NICASIO (5.2IP, 4H, 2R/ER, 6K). Lowe was removed by MANNY ACTA after 3.0IP for precautionary reasons with mid-back tightness. CHRIS PEREZ made his spring exhibition debut with a perfect 6th inning.
Over in Scottsdale, the Snakes scored all 5 runs in the 2nd and 3rd innings off relievers BRYAN PRICE & CHRIS RAY, including a 3-run home run in the 3rd by MIGUEL MONTERO off Ray. Tribe starter DAVID HUFF lasted just one batter after suffering a strained right hamstring while fielding a ground ball. The Indians got 4 hits from JASON DONALD (4-for-5, 2 doubles, 2 runs) and a pair from CASEY KOTCHMAN (2-for-4, double, 2RBI). JOE SMITH and TONY SIPP each tossed 1.0 scoreless inning, while JEREMY ACCARDO logged 2.0 shutout frames of his own.
The Indians will stay in Goodyear tomorrow to play a “road” game against the Cincinnati Reds at 1:05PM MST/4:05PM ET. The contest will be aired live on the Indians Radio Network and Indians.com and delayed until 7PM ET on WMMS 100.7FM. Starting pitchers are JEANMAR GOMEZ & JOHNNY CUETO. KEVIN SLOWEY will start a minor league game in Maryvale for Triple-A Columbus vs. Milwaukee’s AAA club. TONY SIPP is also scheduled to appear in a minor league game.