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Friday, April 22, 2005

Indians Series Preview 

After a split of their two-game, intradivision series (an idea which I hate, incidentally) against the A's, the M's host the Rick Vaughn-less Cleveland Indians this weekend.

Gil Meche (1-0, 6.14) vs. Carsten Charles "C.C." Sabathia (0-0, 1.59)

Sabathia has quieted any doubts about the health of his left hamstring, injured last September, by posting a strong start so far this season. It's probably an anomaly, though, since Carsten Charles has only started one game this season (a no-decision against the Twins). Tonight's as good a night as any for Sabathia to come back down to Earth.

Gil Meche has had two rocky starts and one good one so far this year. If he can get ahead of the Indian batters tonight, he will cruise, but if he falls behind often, he will struggle mightily. I hate to say it, but I'm thinking along the "struggle mightily" lines tonight.

Unfounded call of the game: Adrian Beltre pulls his head out of his netherregions and starts racking up some extra-base hits this series. Finally.

Aaron Sele (1-1, 6.19) vs. Cliff Lee (1-0, 4.76)

This game will take 4 hours and 32 minutes, minimum. With a crappy lefty on the hill for the Tribe, look for a big game out of the Beltre/Sexson/Boone trio.

Sele will Coug it.

Jamie Moyer (3-0, 3.00) vs. Scott Elarton (0-0, 7.90)

Moyer is looking more like the At Least We'll Win This Game pitcher of 1996-2003 than the abomination that was Moyer '04. This one looks like the M's most certain victory of the series.

With the tough games the Mariners are slated to play against the A.L. West, it is imperative that they beat up on weaker American League teams like Cleveland. This series will be an excellent indication of where the Mariners stack up this year. Losing two of three would signal tough times ahead.

It's a beautiful evening in the Pacific Northwest tonight, so fire up the grill, bring out the radio, and enjoy some sunshine and some Dave Niehaus.

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