The title says it all as the Cleveland Indians clinched the Central Division Monday night in Detroit. The Indians topped the tigers 7-4, winning their 91st for the season. Emotions were high in the clubhouse after the game as the team celebrated their first Division Title since 2007. The Tribe missed their chance to clinch Sunday at home, but were running on all cylinders for this clinching win.
The tribe played with their hearts on their sleeves Sunday as they lost to Chicago 4-2. Many believe that minds were not on the game as all of the MLB mourned the loss of 24 year old pitcher Jose Fernandez of the Miami Marlins. As seen in an earlier posting, Fernandez was killed in a boating accident early on Sunday morning. Many teams, including the Indians, held moments of silence in memory, but emotions were high during the games.
Monday the Tribe came back with one thing on their mind, Central Division Title. Left Fielder Coco Crisp started the scoring with a two run home run putting the Tribe up 2-0. Detroit quickly responded in the next inning with a two run homer of their own from Right Fielder JD Martinez. Clutch hits from Second Baseman Jason Kipnis, and First Baseman Mike Napoli would put the Indians back on top, where they would remain until the end. Other key hits came from catcher Roberto Perez (HR, RBI single) and Carlos Santana (RBI double).
Corey Kluber took the hill as starting pitcher, but left the game after pitching just four innings. Fans would later find out that he left due to Right Groin Tightness. The extent of the injury is unknown. Appearances by relief pitchers Dan Otero, Bryan Shaw, and Andrew Miller (Win) would prove to be all the team needed to hold the lead. Cody Allen came in to close out the game, getting the final three outs for the save.
The Tribe continues Tuesday at 7:10PM at Comerica Park, taking on the Tigers once again. With the Division clinch goal made, the next step is achieving home field advantage. The Texas Rangers fell to the Milwaukee Brewers, putting the Tribe behind by one game. The Race is on, and Cleveland will have an October to remember.