Playoffs or bust for Tribe? - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Playoffs or bust for Tribe?

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Cleveland (WOIO) - The goal of every team, in any sport, is to win a championship. Short of that, the season is technically unsuccessful. But if the Indians fall short of the ultimate prize once again, will any true Tribe fan really be able to say they didn't enjoy the ride?

Heading into Friday's game against the Twins, the Indians were 69-58. They'd already won more games, with five weeks to go, than they had in total in 2012. They were two and a half games out of the wild card, just five games behind Detroit in the Central, and in far better shape than many teams with far bigger payrolls.

They're also incredibly streaky, which drives some fans nuts, and obviously can't beat the Tigers. But...here they are, with 35 to play, and as promised, they've made this a wildly entertaining, and competitive, summer.

I predicted 91 wins for the Tribe, assuming they'd get something out of Trevor Bauer and/or Carlos Carrasco. Instead, Danny Salazar has been the pleasant pitching surprise. Still, to hit the 91 mark, they'd have to win 22 of their final 35. Is it possible? Yes. Is it likely? Probably not.

But I've liked the make up of this team from the beginning, and I still believe they can get it done.

If they don't hit 91 wins, they'll be on the outside looking in as far as the playoffs are concerned. But even if that's the case, come September 29th, when they walk off the turf at Target Field in Minneapolis for the final time, I'm still going to label this season as one giant step forward. The critics will cry that the Tribe fell short yet again. And that's a shame, because they'll not only be ignoring the progress, they'll have missed some magical moments along the way.

 

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