CLEVELAND — Indians closer Rafael Betancourt wasn’t happy following Thursday’s 3-2 extra-inning win over the Seattle Mariners. Tribe manager Eric Wedge let everyone listening know how he felt about the victory as well.
But sitting in the clubhouse on Friday before Cleveland’s opener against Kansas City was rained out, Wedge changed his tune a little, deciding it was just water under the bridge on a team struggling to find a way back to the top of the American League Central Division.
“I’m happy we won, but you have to try to analyze things as need be,” Wedge said. “I try to get my head straight by the time the head hits the pillow. That’s what I try to do.
“I’ve trained to work hard and manage myself. I’m better than I used to be, but I have moments like everyone else. But you have to be honest with where you’re at.”
The manager said he sometimes stays late after games like Thursday’s loss, but “last night I got the hell out of here.”
With good reason.
The Tribe wasted a beautiful outing by Paul Byrd when Betancourt blew a save opportunity. The right-hander was two outs away from securing the win in the ninth when Ichiro Suzuki scored from second after stealing third, scoring on Casey Blake’s error. It was Betancourt’s first blown save since replacing Joe Borowski on April 15.
Suzuki started the ninth with a single and reached second on Betancourt’s wild pitch before the Blake mistake.
It wasn’t the only miscue on the night as the Tribe wasted an opportunity to put it away in the 10th. Trailing 2-1, Cleveland loaded the bases and tied it up with a one-out walk by Grady Sizemore, but Blake and David Dellucci struck out to end the inning. It was Blake’s fourth whiff of the game and Dellucci’s third.
Asdrubal Cabrera saved the game with a bases-loaded single in the 11th, but that didn’t matter to Betancourt who made it known that the blown save didn’t sit well.
“You know what, it’s an emotional game at times, but you have to understand in that role you have to have a short memory,” Wedge said. “You damn sure better have a short memory. You have to shake it and move forward.”
WHO: Kansas City at Cleveland
WHERE: Progressive Field
PITCHERS: Sabathia (1-4, 7.88 ERA) vs. Hochevar (1-1, 5.91)
TV/RADIO: SportsTime Ohio; WEOL 930-AM, WTAM 1100-AM
Game rained out
Friday’s game against Kansas City at Progressive Field was postponed and no makeup date has been scheduled. Fans are asked to hold their tickets. The fireworks show was moved to May 10 against Toronto. Friday’s scheduled starters, C.C. Sabathia and Luke Hochevar, will start tonight. Tribe lefty Aaron Laffey and Royals right-hander Gil Meche will pitch Sunday.