By Steve Buffum
It's not Cleveland per se, but it is a Division rival: by now, you've no doubt seen that ex-Tribesman Jim Thome beat the Royals with a 3-run clout off ersatz setup man Kyle Farnsworth, which is British
for "Jose Mesa." Farnsworth throws Really Hard (tm), augmented by nary an iota of movement, and Thome isn't too bad at hitting that pitch.
Historically, Farnsworth is homer-prone ... pitching in a homer-prone park in The Cell ... to a guy with 500 homers.
Rany Jazayerli writes poetically on the decision, as do Joe Posnanski and
All you have to really know is this:
1) Juan Cruz is better than Kyle Farnsworth
2) Ron Mahay is more left-handed than Kyle Farnsworth, and Thome has a severe platoon split
3) Joakim Soria is better than Juan Cruz, Ron Mahay, and Kyle Farnsworth combined, and manager Trey Hillman had said he would be used for more 4 and 5-out saves this season
4) Jermaine Dye, who is right handed, follows Jim Thome in the lineup. He does not have 500 home runs.
5) Kyle Farnsworth is not actually good
To let Farnsworth pitch to Thome with two on in a one-run game is tantamount to Fan Abuse.
Other than that, I can't really find much fault in the decision.