Tomlin’s 6-inning start streak ends

Things have been going downhill for Josh Tomlin for the past two weeks, but it wasn’t until Sunday that his streak of six-inning starts came to a halt.

Prior to his start against the Yankees Tomlin had gone at least six innings in each of his 12 starts – the longest streak to open a season since Greg Swindell in 1988. Over the past 50 seasons, only four different pitchers had opened the season with a streak longer than Tomlin’s.

But now Tomlin has another streak to worry about.

In each of his last three starts he’s allowed six earned runs – the Tribe’s longest streak since Cliff Lee in August, 2007.

No Indians pitcher has allowed six earned runs in four consecutive games since Wes Ferrell in 1933.

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Quality Starts are a good sign

I guess this isn’t the best time to bring this up, following two rough outings by the staff, but I thought it was worth passing along.

The Indians have 26 quality starts through 36 games, tied for the 3rd longest streak of the wild card era. Excluding the 2011 Phillies (27 quality starts so far) each of the four teams with 26 or more won at least 85 games.

The bad news is that only the 2010 Rays made the playoffs, but I’m fine with that for two reasons. One, 85 wins just might get the job done in the AL Central this year. And two, even if we don’t make the playoffs 85 wins is about 20 more than I expected.

It’s obviously not a guarantee, but we’re getting deep enough into the season where we have to start taking this staff seriously.

[bonus note: the last Indians team that had more than 26 QS through 36 games was the 1968 staff led by Sam McDowell and Luis Tiant.]

Tomlin joins Masterson at 3-0

Josh Tomlin picked up the win on Saturday, joining Justin Masterson at 3-0.

Masterson and Tomlin are the first pair of Indians starters with three wins the teams first 14 games since Rick Sutcliffe and Bert Blyleven in 1984. Pryor to ’84, you have to go back to Milt Wilcox and Gaylord Perry in 1972.

Making their hot start more impressive is the fact that they’re doing it at such a young age. Tomlin and Masterson, both 26, join CC Sabathia (2007) and Bartolo Colon (1999) as the only Tribe pitchers to win three games in the team’s first 14 games while under the age of 27. And since 1920, the only other pair to accomplish the feat was Sam McDowell and Luis Tiant in 1966.