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06.12.2018 04:35
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(SportsNetwork. Authentic Paul Stastny Jersey .com) - No team was hotter than the Cleveland Indians down the stretch. The Tribe shoots for an 11th straight win on Wednesday when they welcome the Tampa Bay Rays to Progressive Field for the American League wild card game. Cleveland won its final 10 regular-season games to earn the No. 1 wild card position. The Indians also became the sixth team in major league history to finish a season on a winning streak of 10 or more games. Prior to the Indians, the last team to do it was the 1971 Orioles. Cleveland also went a major-league-best 21-6 in September. It was the first time Cleveland won 20 games in a month since doing so twice in 1995, a year in which the Indians reached the World Series. "This is what you play for," Indians pitcher Justin Masterson said on Sunday. "You play to win a World Series, but youve got to get there first, get to the playoffs. So you play to get to the playoffs, and here we are with that opportunity. Its just been incredible. The ups and downs of this organization the last few years, we couldnt ask for anything better." Hosting the game may also be a benefit for the Indians, who were 51-30 in front of their fans this season. However, Cleveland was an absurd 36-52 against teams with .500-or-better records this season. "Its been a long time since Clevelands had something like this," Indians first baseman Nick Swisher said after Cleveland clinched the wild card spot on Sunday. "I hope the fans are as excited as we are." The 92 wins for the Tribe were quite a contrast from a year ago when they lost 94 games. General manager Chris Antonetti made a bevy of offseason moves, but none may have been bigger than landing manager Terry Francona, whose leadership and calm presence has helped the Indians back to the postseason for the first time in six years. "I have no doubt," Antonetti said, "that we would not be in the position we are without Titos leadership." As big of an impact as Francona has had on Cleveland, it was the teams starting pitching staff that carried them to the finish line. Clevelands 3.16 ERA since the All-Star break was the second best in the American League and the fourth best in the majors. During the 10-game winning streak, Indians pitchers held the opposition to two runs or less seven times. One of those starters, right-handed rookie Danny Salazar, gets the call for the Indians on Wednesday. "This is awesome," said Salazar, who has never faced the Rays. "The team has trust in me. Im just going to do my best there." Salazar has been brilliant since joining the rotation in July, boasting a 3.12 ERA, 1.13 WHIP and 65/15 K/BB ratio over 52 innings. He pitched to a 2.53 ERA in five September starts and recorded 33 strikeouts over 25 innings in that span. "Hes not a finished product," Francona said. "The finished product is going to be special, but hes comfortable on the mound. We wouldnt do it if we werent comfortable." If theres one drawback to Salazar its the fact that the 23-year-old has pitched more than six innings in only one of his 10 starts. So, Franconas bullpen will have to be ready and its a unit without a leader at the moment, as the Indians will likely employ a closer-by-committee arrangement after Chris Perez was demoted from the closers role following an awful final month that saw him pitch to a 9.64 ERA. "Im here to help the team," Perez said. "I went into (Franconas) office the other night and said, Im not going to cost this team a playoff spot. You need to make a change right now. Youve got four or five guys who are throwing the (heck) out of the ball. I dont have an ego. Make the change. And he did." One player who could emerge as a huge factor in the bullpen is Masterson, who missed most of September with a strained oblique, but threw three scoreless innings of relief upon returning. Tampa, meanwhile, needed an extra game to get into this position, as it defeated Texas, 5-2, on Monday in a tiebreaker game to secure the second wild card spot. "Get your 92nd win, you go to Cleveland against a really good ballclub," Rays manager Joe Maddon said after his teams win on Monday. "Theyre rested. I like the notion that weve pretty much been playing this (elimination-type) game for about a week now." David Price went the distance for the fourth time this year and Evan Longoria belted a deciding two-run homer to pace the Rays, who are back in the postseason for the fourth time in the past six years. "Its a whirlwind, like it always is," said Longoria, who was on base in four of his five at-bats. "We went through so much in the last three days, the ups and downs and the emotions, that it kind of feels like the whole season. Weve had a lot of disappointment here, and to be able to celebrate here, its pretty fitting." Longoria could be getting hot at the right time for the Rays, as he is 11- for-19 (.579) with seven homers, 11 RBI and nine runs scored over his last five games. Price (10-8), who came in sporting an ugly 10.26 ERA in four career starts in Arlington, made sure the Rays moved on by limiting the Rangers to two runs on seven hits. The ace struck out four, walked one and retired 11 of the last 12 batters he faced to finish off his gem. "My last time against these guys, I beat them as well, so that kind of gets lost in it, just getting that first game out of the way," said Price. "Getting that first win against a team youve never beat, thats huge. Last time on this mound, I beat those guys. We did it again tonight. Its pretty special." Getting the call for the Rays on Wednesday will be righty Alex Cobb, whose season was almost derailed back in June when he was hit in the face with a line drive. The young hurler returned after missing two months and ended the year 11-3 with a 2.76 ERA. Cobb was unbeaten over the final month, going 3-0 with a 2.57 ERA and tossed seven scoreless innings his last time out against the New York Yankees. "He pitched extremely well once again," Maddon said. "Curveball outstanding, changeup ... I think he was having a hard time command-wise with the changeup early. ... Then he started using his fastball more, which I thought was a great move. But overall, a fantastic performance." Cobb is 2-1 with a 2.70 ERA in his career against Cleveland. This year, he faced the Indians once and beat them, 6-0, with seven shutout innings on April 6. Pitching continues to be the Rays calling card. They threw a team-record 17 shutouts this season, including four in their past 18 games. Their 32 shutouts over the last two years are tied with the Dodgers for most in the majors. They are the first AL team with 15 shutouts in consecutive seasons since the 1989-90 As. Tampa won four of its six matchups with the Indians this season. Authentic Erik Haula Jersey . PETERSBURG, Fla. Authentic Pierre-Edouard Bellemare Jersey . His head snapped back from the impact and hit the floor. The All-Star power forward was all right afterward, a relief for the Minnesota Timberwolves. http://www.cheapgoldenknightsjerseysauthentic.com/?tag=authentic-nick-holden-jersey .com) - The Kansas City Chiefs activated linebacker Joe Mays from short-term injured reserve on Saturday.SAN FRANCISCO -- Pat Shine joined the Miami Marlins to be their go-to guy for evaluating and monitoring replay scenarios. On Saturday night, Shine left AT&T Park with a souvenir game ball for his heads-up performance behind the scenes in a 5-0 victory over the San Francisco Giants. It saved Miami from giving up an early run that could have swung the momentum. Marlins manager Mike Redmond requested a review of whether Brandon Hicks touched first base on a second-inning double. The play was overturned in 2 minutes, 42 seconds, and became a putout from the pitcher to first baseman. That left Hector Sanchez on third base with two outs, and Brandon Crawford ended the inning on a deep fly to centre. "That was unbelievable. In my mind, Pat Shine won the game today," winning pitcher Tom Koehler said. "I looked at the replay to see how close it was. Second inning of the game and if youre wrong you burn your challenge in the second inning. Hes been doing a great job all year and thats why he got the game ball today when we came in from the field. Thats no joke. He got the game ball." Giancarlo Stanton homered and tripled to back Koehler (4-3) in his first road win. He struck out seven in seven innings to finally win in five tries away from South Florida after coming into his outing 0-3 on the road to start the year. He allowed four hits and walked two in his first road victory since Sept. 22, at Washington. Garrett Jones hit an RBI triple, Jarrod Saltalamacchia had a sacrifice fly and Adeiny Hechavarria singled to drive in a run for Miami. The Marlins improved to 11-2 at AT&T Park since 2011. Tim Lincecum (3-3), coming off his best start of the year with an 11-strikeout performance in a season-high 7 2-3 innings to beat Atlanta on Monday, never found his groove. On a night thousands in the sellout crowd donned orange giveaway Fedoras, the Giants were handed consecutive home losses for just the second time all year and first since April 9-10 against Arizona. San Francisco figures it missed a scoring opportunity in the second via a replay review. Giants coach Shawon Dunston, who works the replay room in the clubhouse, said the right call was made -- though Hicks thhought he glanced the bag. Authentic Brad Hunt Jersey. He didnt plan to watch the replay, ready to move on from the mistake. "The umpires were right," Dunston said. "He didnt touch it. They got it right." Stanton, whose career-high 17-game hitting streak ended with an 0 for 5 on Friday, hit a two-out triple in the third -- his first since Sept. 15, 2012, off Cincinnatis Johnny Cueto. Stanton hit his 12th homer in the seventh. Kevin Slowey, Miamis third pitcher, got into trouble in the ninth and Steve Cishek entered to finish the six-hit shutout with his ninth save. San Francisco went 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position and left nine on base. "Ive said this many times, when you dont hit and score runs, you look flat," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "That was the game. We couldnt knock in runs." Suspended infielder Miguel Tejada was quoted as telling ESPN Deportes he had signed a minor league contract with the Marlins pending a physical. He served 41 games of a 105-game suspension last year for testing positive for an amphetamine. Tejada would be eligible to play in the Marlins 65th game, which barring rainouts would be June 10 at Texas. He could appear in minor league games at Double-A or lower on May 31. NOTES: Giants C Buster Posey had the night off until grounding out as a pinch-hitter in the ninth. ... Giants RHP Tim Hudson tested his strained left hip with an up-tempo throwing session on flat ground and was scheduled to throw a bullpen Sunday. Hes on target to make his next start Thursday at Colorado. He made 30-40 throws from up to about 80 feet. ... Both managers were still talking about two exclamation-point catches a night earlier -- Stantons grab of a fly by Michael Morse at the StubHub! sign in right field and San Francisco CF Angel Pagans over-the-shoulder catch of a ball by Derek Dietrich at the YAHOO! sign in left-centre. Pagan landed hard on his left shoulder trying to make a diving catch Saturday. ... Giants athletic trainer Dave Groeschner remains optimistic of 2B Marco Scutaro returning from a back injury this year. "Thats our goal," Groeschner said. 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