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#1 03/01/19 06:57:46

Registered: 31/07/18
Posts: 286

in any capacity

Corey Kluber can take another step toward a third Cy Young Award when he opens the Cleveland Indians‘ three-game series against the Tampa Bay Rays on Monday night at Tropicana Field.But the ace right-hander can do something else even more important — pitch his team even closer to clinching the American League Central.It won’t be easy against the red-hot Rays.Article continues below ...Tampa Bay Michael Pineda Jersey , still a long-shot wild-card hopeful, completed a sweep of a three-game series with an 8-3 victory against the Baltimore Orioles on Sunday. The Rays have won seven of their last eight and 16 of their last 19 games, are 14 games above .500 for the first time this season and have won a franchise record-tying 11 straight in their building.They are 32-8 at the Trop since June 11.The Rays, who outscored the woeful Orioles 32-10 in three games, are 24-11 since the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.“Good way to wrap up the series,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said after Sunday’s game. “We had an opportunity to (get a three-game sweep) in Toronto and fell a little bit short. Today, the guys came out and put some pressure on their young pitcher (Josh Rogers) Fernando Rodney Jersey , which is good to see. Brandon Lowe with the big (three-run) home run. Kind of the separator right there.”Despite losing in Toronto and the Twins winning at home Sunday, the Indians, running away with their division, are in position to clinch in St. Petersburg. Their magic number is five, so it’s clearly just a matter of time.The Rays went to Cleveland from Aug. 31 through Sept. 2 and won twice, losing only to Kluber, who allowed no runs and two hits in seven innings.Kluber (18-7 … eed-jersey , 2.75 ERA), who is 2-0 with an 0.66 ERA in his last two starts, goes for his MLB-leading 19th victory. He is 7-1 in his last nine starts as he tries to hold off other Cy contenders, including Tampa Bay’s Blake Snell.Kluber is 5-2 with a 2.17 ERA in nine career games against the Rays and 2-1 with a 3.38 in four starts at Tropicana Field.Reliever Diego Castillo will be the “opener” for the Rays on Monday night for the second time in three days as Tampa Bay goes to its new formula for success for the third straight game.MVP candidate Jose Ramirez provided a Cleveland highlight in Sunday’s loss, joining Joe Carter and Grady Sizemore as the only Indians players with 30 home runs and 30 steals in a season.“I feel really happy about that,” Ramirez said through a translator. “I kind of feel the same way about both (homers and steals).”Teammate Francisco Lindor, who hit his 34th homer of the season … uer-jersey , said, “Not a lot of people do it in history. It’s a special number. He’s having a great season, and I’m very happy for him.”The current Rays roster is a combined 11-for-57 (.193) against Kluber. Carlos Gomez, who homered Sunday, is 1-for-8 (.125), but the hit was a home run. Ji-Man Choi is 1-for-7 (.143).The Indians are expected to activate Andrew Miller from the 10-day disabled list before Monday night’s game. He has been out — for the second time this season — with a left shoulder injury since Aug. 29.Tommy Pham, bothered by a hamstring Glen Perkins Jersey , started at DH for the Rays on Sunday and extended his hitting streak to a career-high 13 games. Patrick McDermott/Getty ImagesThe Baltimore Orioles reportedly parted ways with manager Buck Showalter on Wednesday.Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that Showalter will not be back with the O's "in any capacity" next season.USA Today's Bob Nightengale first reported on September 21 that Showalter was expected to be canned following the conclusion of the 2018 season.For the Orioles, the move was a no-brainer.Baltimore was a major league-worst47-115this season andjoined the1962 New York Mets and 2003 Detroit Tigers as the only teams in the expansion era to win fewer than 50 games.Plus, Showalter was never a fit to lead the Orioles through what figures to be an extensive and arduous rebuild after Manny Machado, Zach Britton,Kevin Gausman,Darren O'Day andJonathan Schoop were all shipped out of town in advance of the trade deadline.Dan Szymborski of FanGraphs speculated that Showalter's relationship with general manager Dan Duquette may have played a role in his firing:Dan Szymborski DSzymborskiIm not surprised the Os are parting ways with Buck. I think you need a GM and a manager that are on the same page and its been increasingly apparent for the last six months that Duquette was more likely to stay.Showalter, 62 Harmon Killebrew Jersey , will now depart Baltimore with a669-684 recordacross eight seasons and change with the Orioles dating back to his installation as the club's manager midway through the 2010 campaign. All told, his career record sits at 1,551-1,517.The highlight of his time in Charm City came in 2014 when the Orioles went 96-66, captured the franchise's first American League East title since 1997 and made a run to the ALCS before their season was ended by the Kansas City Royals.Since then, the Orioles have managed one winning season as the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees re-established themselves as the class of the division.Showalter will now sit back and wait as spots open up in dugouts across MLB as he eyes a fresh start in a new locale.


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