CLEVELAND (AP) – The Indians’ September surge has gotten soggy.
For the second straight day Cleveland’s game against Detroit was rained out, denying the Indians a chance to maybe get back to .500 and slowing their charge in the AL wild-card race.
The tarp, rolled out during pregame batting practice, never came off the field, and after waiting for more than two hours, the Indians finally announced their second straight postponement at 9:38 p.m. The teams are already scheduled to play a doubleheader on Sunday, and because the Tigers and Indians don’t share a common off day for the rest of the regular season, a makeup date is still to be determined.
It’s possible the game will be played on Oct. 5, a day after the Indians conclude their regular season at home against Boston.
“I’m so over the rain,” infielder Mike Aviles said with a smile. “I’d be very happy if I don’t see this ever again. It’s kind of annoying after a while when you’re sitting around waiting, hoping the rain stops. At the end of the day you’re here. You want to play. You want to get it done.”
It’s understandable why the Indians are eager to get on the field. With 11 wins in 15 games, Cleveland has moved back into contention for one of the league’s two wild-card spots – a surprising push for a team that appeared out of it last month and made several trades in July with an eye toward the future.
But they’ve turned it around and are just one game under .500, a place they haven’t seen since they were 2-2 on April 10.
Aviles doesn’t think a couple days off will be costly.
“Nobody thought we’d be in this position right now anyway, other than ourselves, so I don’t think it hurts us,” Aviles said. “In all honesty, it may help us in the long run. Give the body two days of rest where you’re not banging yourself around and taking BP outside.”
Indians rookie Cody Anderson will start Sunday’s opener against Justin Verlander. Both were scheduled to start Friday, had their outings pushed back by the rain, and then had them delayed again.
“Instead of being locked in for one day, you’re locked in for three,” Anderson said. “”You just gotta be able to adjust.”
Trevor Bauer, tagged for seven runs in three innings against the Tigers in his last outing against them, will start Game 2 against Tigers’ left-hander Randy Wolf.
Detroit has lost 15 of 20, fueling speculation about manager Brad Ausmus’ job security. The Tigers said Friday that his status won’t be determined until after the season.
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