Terry Francona has led the Cleveland Indians to a strong start to the season in his first year as manager of the team. The Indians are 20-15 and tied for first in the AL Central after taking two of three from the Detroit Tigers over the weekend. The series didn’t start off so favorably, though, as Detroit won 10-4 on Friday after getting home runs from Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera. The homers led to some funny comments from Francona about how to defend against possibly the best 3-4 combination in baseball.
“They’ve very dangerous. It’s a lot like when we had David Ortiz and Manny Ramirez in Boston. … You can shift [the defense] all you want, but unless you put someone in the bleachers, you’re not going to have the field fully covered,” Francona joked, via The Cleveland Plain Dealer.
Cabrera went 2-for-5 with a 3-run home run on Friday, and he was 3-for-9 the next two games. Fielder hit a solo home run on Friday and went 1-for-7 the next two games. Both sluggers are crushing the ball this season.
Fielder has posted a .974 OPS, while Cabrera’s 1.052 mark is fourth in MLB. No surprise, the Tigers have produced the second-most runs in the league this season and are tied for first in the division. As long as those two are in the lineup, Detroit is going to have a competitive team.