Fortune favours the Braves in 59
Posted August 26, 2019
In a repeat of 58 the Indians attempted to face down the mighty Braves. This time they were facing the greatest Pitching rotation seen to date in CBF. With the prospect of having to face Buhl possibly three times in a 7 game series and Spahn twice the Tribe knew they had to take every chance that came their way.
The problem was no such chances did come their way. Even in Game 1 with Buhl not hitting his spots he had enough tricks in his bag to pitch three hit ball over 6 innings. McMahon, Pizarro abd Rush mopped up a 4-0 shut out.
Game 2 may just have been that chance we talked about. Warren Spahn was losse giving up 10 hits in 4.2 before being relieved. This time Willey, McMahon and Rush platooned for the 4-2 win after Spahn departed.
With the series starting to have the aura of inevability the series headed to Cleveland and a match up between the revitalised Gary Bell and Lew Burdette. With the Bird Cage having a rocky 1-5 season and losing star spot on the rotation the Indians had earmarked this as a must win game. When they scored on an error in the third it looked hopeful. Instead the Braves did what they have done all year if faced with a crisis. They enaged turbo drive or in this case Hammerin' Hank to drive home the tying run with Joe Adcock providing another to cement the win in the 8th.
There were not many takers for the 12/1 odds against a Cleveland victory in Game 4. Buhl was on the mound again and again his pitches did not have the same zing as the regular season. His arm was probably crying out for the off season. He gave up a run but when he left after 7 he handed over a 5-1 lead. A walk followed by two quick fire doubles and it was 5-3 and a few little jitters were starting in the crowd. No need to worry...an Eddie Mathews triple and an Aaron sac fly restored the 4 run lead and McMahon closed down a 7-3 victory.
So the Indians didn't even manage one win this year but they were facing a special team. Special mentions go to Hank Aaron and Bob Buhl but all stars need their supporting cast and a rap needs to be given to Eddie Mathews for his terling work all season.
Stay tuned this week for MVP, Cy Young and Golden Glove Awards.