Indians right-hander Corey Kluber might not be a household name yet, but he’s getting closer with every strikeout.
Kluber fanned 12 batters and allowed two runs on five hits and one walk over 7 1/3 innings last night in a victory over the Rockies at Progressive Field in Cleveland. The outing closed the book on a fantastic May, as he posted a 2.04 ERA over six starts and struck out at least eight batters in all of them.
All those strikeouts have put him in some pretty impressive company:
After quietly compiling a 3.85 ERA and 136/33 K/BB ratio over 147 1/3 innings with the Indians last season, Kluber has posted a 3.04 ERA through 12 starts this season and currently leads the majors with 95 strikeouts over 80 innings. His 10.7 K/9 is the best among starters while his 28.4 percent strikeout percentage is only slightly behind that of Zack Greinke, Stephen Strasburg, and Masahiro Tanaka, who have struck out batters at rate of 28.5 percent.
I have begun referring to Kluber as “Klubot the Strikeout Machine,” and I encourage you all to do the same.
The substance of the report is not shocking. Francisco Lindor is one of baseball’s brightest young stars and the Cleveland Indians would, no doubt, wish to lock him up for an extended period of time. The surprising part is the guy who reported that, yes, the Indians are working to get Lindor a seven-year extension.
That guy: six-year-old Brody Chernoff, son of Indians general manager Mike Chernoff. Brody was invited into the team’s broadcast booth during the ninth inning of their game against the Chicago White Sox. Indians announcer Tom Hamilton asked, no doubt jokingly, if his working on anything interesting. Brody:
“He’s trying to get, um, Lindor to play for seven more years,”
Again, not shocking. It would’ve been way worse if Brody had said “Dad’s working on a three-way deal that’ll send Naquin to an NL team in order to affect a three-way trade that’ll land us Verlander without having to deal directly with a divisional rival.” But I imagine Dad still would’ve preferred he not mention that.
Bill Whitehead of the Atlanta Journal Constitution reports that the Braves have signed reliever David Hernandez to a minor league contract on Sunday. He’ll report to spring training as a non-roster invitee.
Hernandez, who turns 32 years old in May, signed a minor league contract with the Giants in February. He requested and was granted his release on Friday when he learned he wasn’t making the team’s 25-man roster to open the season.
Hernandez pitched for the Phillies last year. He compiled a 3.84 ERA with an 80/32 K/BB ratio in 72 2/3 innings.