The Cleveland Indians are not just giving up on the season because Shane Bieber, Zach Plesac, and Aaron Civale are all out with injuries.
Instead, the team is now 41-31 after a win Thursday night that pushes the team within two games of the division-leading Chicago White Sox.
Eddie Rosario was the hero on offense, but the Indians were only in a position to win because of a great outing from young starter J.C. Mejia.
He kept it close, the bullpen was perfect, and the Indians just keep on winning.
J.C. Mejía pulled all the pieces together last night, allowing only one run on a wild pitch in the 1st inning. 👀#OurCLE pic.twitter.com/IxLW6pll25
— Cleveland Indians (@Indians) June 25, 2021
A Fantastic Start
Not too long ago we were discussing how the Indians finally let Mejia get stretched out a bit by throwing 77 pitches in a start.
There are now no more limits as he threw 96 pitches in six innings of work Thursday.
And it is not like he was out there just to protect the bullpen.
Mejia pitched six innings of one-run baseball in what was easily his best MLB start.
Some fans may say taking down the Minnesota Twins is not some glowing achievement.
But they are still a division rival and we are talking about a rookie pitcher.
It doesn’t matter if he shuts out the Houston Astros or the Baltimore Orioles.
A great start that leads to a win is all that matters against any MLB squad.
We all know the Indians have a great bullpen and all the starter needs to do is turn it over after five or six strong innings.
Mejia did just that and Blake Parker, Bryan Shaw, and James Karinchak led the team to victory.
Different Result, Same Formula
Eli Morgan's Bugs Bunny Changeup (by request) 🐰 pic.twitter.com/Qi9NMDF2Xg
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) June 17, 2021
Another young pitcher was allowed to go deep Tuesday when Eli Morgan logged five innings of work in a loss to the Chicago Cubs.
That was only his third ever start, and he only did allow four earned runs in his five innings.
The difference was the offense went cold for the entire game, scoring only one run in the loss.
This is still extremely impressive for Morgan.
His first start came in a hurricane back in May.
He then headed back to Triple-A before making his return June 17.
The rookie was limited to only 3.2 innings in that game, but the Indians did win.
His five innings this week at least show the coaches are comfortable letting him go through the lineup twice.
They may have to let him go through three times soon simply out of necessity if the bullpen needs a break.
It will also let the staff see what they have in the young pitcher.
This is all new territory for the team and fans alike.
While it is unnerving at times, it can also be exciting.
There is no easier team to root for than a young one proving all the doubters wrong.
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