Hope washed away by rain

The weather turned dark and gloomy and the treacherous downpour over Jacobs Field in the sixth inning effectively drowned the Indians’ season. Monday night’s 12-8 loss to the Chicago Cubs stretched the Tribe’s losing streak to four. After falling behind 3-0, the Indians tied it up after home runs by Eduardo Perez and Travis Hafner. Cubs catcher Henry Blanco responded right back with a three-run home run in the fourth off Jason Johnson. The Indians’ starter left after giving up three earned runs through five innings but the Cubs proceeded to pound the bullpen. They added six runs in three innings off Fernando Cabrera and Jeremy Guthrie. The Indians were able to cut the lead slightly by scoring four in the ninth but the damage was already done. For the Cubs, the victory snapped a six-game losing streak.

“We’ve done a very poor job,” manager Eric Wedge said of the Indians’ ninth consecutive loss to open a series. “We recognize how bad things are right now, but good ballclubs find a way to overcome and win.”

And the Indians aren’t a very good ballclub right now by any means. Only so much blame can be placed on Wedge for the struggles this season because he can only work with what he’s got. But I do blame him for not getting on these guys earlier. It’s too late to go off on a post-game tirade now because the Tribe are too far behind in the standings to make a playoff push. From the moment he took the job four years ago, it’s been said that Wedge is an in-your-face type of manager. He has been far too patient and laid back with the team this season. The Indians need a kick in the rear but Wedge should have done that about a month ago.

Case and point, look at what Jim Leyland and Ozzie Guillen have done this season. Leyland went off publicly on his team after a loss to the Indians early in the year and they proceeded to get on a roll following that incident and now earn the best record in baseball. And as much as I dislike the guy, Ozzie Guillen never takes any crap from his team and isn’t afraid to criticize them when they are playing poorly. The Indians are going to see some big crowds in the next week due to interleague play but when American League play resumes, it’s going to be a barren sight at Jacobs Field.

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