Player of the Game
Jason Kipnis won the day as a whole with a combined score of 10.68, but he didn't win the Player of the Game in either game individually. Michael Bourn won the honors in game two as the fire starter the Indians needed. He scored the first run of the game in the first inning and the tying run in the ninth. In all, he had three singles, two runs and an RBI and was great on the base paths. Bourn's POG score of 4.25 beat out the big RBI guys including Nick Swisher (3.97) who hit the game winning home run and Mark Reynolds (3.21) who hit an equally important, though less emotional, solo home run in the sixth.
The Indians didn't leave all their runs for the first game of the double header. They got started early again in game two, scoring four times in the first inning. Again, Jason Kipnis was right in the middle of things, hitting an RBI single in his first at bat and scoring on a wild pitch later in the inning. Carlos Santana and Michael Brantley (who were both held out of the opening game) had the other two RBI.
Despite a bullpen that disappointed in every possible way, the Indians offense found a way to come back in the ninth inning, down three. Ryan Raburn, pinch hitter Asdrubal Cabrera and Michael Bourn all came through with hits before a wild pitch and a Kipnis foul ball were able to tie the game. Nick Swisher finished things off by doing what he's getting paid to do, hitting balls into the seats to win games.
It was really dumb for the White Sox to start the first game of a double header with a 4:00 pm start time. Even without the rain delay and extra long first game the earliest this game would have ended would have been 11:00 pm local time. With all the extra stuff (mostly 29 runs in the first game and some miscellaneous water) the second game didn't end until 2:08 eastern.
Rich Hill was worse than worthless tonight as the first reliever into the game and the only pitcher who was available in game one and didn't pitch. Hill threw a fastball right down the middle to Adam Dunn on an 0-2 pitch to give up the lead in the sixth inning, although both runs were charged to Carlos Carrasco, who had allowed them originally. Hill then threw a wild pitch and walked the bases loaded. Hill has been by far the worst pitcher of any kind on the roster all season and has continually forced Nick Hagadone (a much better and younger pitcher) to the minors four times because of Hills lack of options. With the plethora of options at AAA for relievers including multiple left handers and long relievers, the Indians would be best off releasing Hill some time during last May.
Terry Francona did a subpar job of managing his bullpen in the first game and it cost him in the second game. In a game that was ultimately decided by nine runs, he used his top three set up men and his closer, leaving nothing for the second game. He did however, save Hill, who has already been mentioned. If Hill had thrown his two innings in the early game, or Cody Allen or Joe Smith used to pitch one more inning than they did, they would at least have had Chris Perez available in game two.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 9 - Chicago White Sox 8