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Celebrating a season of pride for MLB’s Tribe

Published: Sat, October 14, 2017 @ 12:00 a.m.

Sure, hopes ran high as the Cleveland Indians entered the 2017 Major League Baseball season on the heels of falling only two runs shy of a World Series title in 2016.

And sure, those hopes ran higher as the Tribe displayed long spurts of sensational play throughout the spring, summer and fall, punctuated of course by a record-setting American League winning streak of 22 games last month.

So sure, the Indians’ elimination this week from further postseason play and a possible return engagement at the World Series hurts.

It hurts all the more because, in typical Tribe fashion, Cleveland started out strong with a 2-0 lead in the best-of-five series, only to lose its next three games to those indomitable Bronx Bombers.

In the words of Cody Allen, the franchise’s relief pitcher who gave up the Indians’ final two runs of this postseason, “It absolutely stinks.”

“It’s like being a kid going to an amusement park, and after 10 minutes, you have to leave,” he lamented in a published report in the New York Times.

Though we, too, lament the fact that the Tribe’s 2017 fun in the post-season sun was fleeting, Tribe loyalists have no reason to hang their heads in abject shame.


Once the pain of the moment subsides, much is left to savor from the professional baseball team’s performance over the past six months.

Take the talent of pitcher Corey Kluber, an odds-on favorite for the coveted Cy Young Award this season. His earned-run average of 1.62 was the lowest in the MLB by nearly a run. It also stands as the lowest home ERA by a starting Tribe pitcher since Gaylord Perry way back in 1972.

Or take the hitting acumen of third-baseman Jose Ramirez. His 91-extra-base hits rank second-most ever by a switch-hitter, and his nine consecutive multi-hit games in June stands as the longest such streak by a Cleveland player since Roy Hughes in 1936.

And as a collective team, there’s little room for disgrace.

“We did things during the regular seson that nobody can take away from us – the 22 games, the way our staff pitched or the team played, everything we’ve done this year leading up to this point,” reliever Bryan Shaw said, adding, “Nobody can take that away from us.”

Shaw is correct. Team members and devotees of the 116-year-old Northeastern Ohio franchise alike should now channel that pride and momentum into the 2018 season to fuel another season of superlative play aimed squarely at going the distance to reign at last as World Series champions.

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