The Indians have had many inconsistencies this season, but the one aspect of their team that has not disappointed is the back end of their bullpen. With setup man Vinnie Pestano, and All-Star closer Chris Perez, the Indians always believe they are going to win with a lead late in the ball game. This streak would end as the Tampa Bay Rays came from behind to defeat the Indians 7-6. Cleveland led 5-0 through five innings on Sunday afternoon. Indians' starter Zach McAllister was cruising until the sixth inning, when an error by short stop Asdrubal Cabrera helped Tampa Bay score four runs. The Indians would add another run in the bottom of the eight to give the Tribe a two run lead at 6-4.
Closer Chris Perez came in for the save opportunity, and started off strong with a strike out to Jose Lobaton. EVerything fell apart from their for Perez. After the strike out, Perez gave up a solo homer to Will Rhymes, followed by a single and a triple from Tampa Bay which tied the game at six. The dagger came with an RBI single by Ben Zobrist would ended up being the winning run as the Tribe could not score despite threatening in the bottom of the ninth.
The Indians should still feel positive about their first half of the season, as they just sit three games behind the first place Chicago White Sox. If the Indians can remain healthy, and add some help via trade, this team should continue to contend for the remainder of the season. Cleveland also has one of the easier schedules amongst American League teams which should also play in their favor.
With the All-Star break now in session, the Tribe will get ready for a second half push. Asrubal Cabrera and Chris Perez will be representing Cleveland on Tuesday night in the All-Star game. The winner of the All-Star game also gets home field advantage in the World Series. Hopefully Cabrera and Perez can contribute to the American League regaining home field advantage in the World Series, especially since Cleveland is still in contention.
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