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The View From Pluto: An Indians World Series Game 7 Is 'Awesome Agony'

Indians World Series
Amanda Rabinowitz

The World Series will go to a deciding Game 7, with Addison Russell's grand slam and 6 RBIs leading the Chicago Cubs to a 9-3 win over the Cleveland Indians last night. Josh Tomlin didn't make it out of the third inning. The loss for the Indians ties the series at 3-3. WKSU commentator Terry Pluto says Cleveland fans are no strangers to the drama.

Terry Pluto says there are two ways to look at tonight's game 7: 

“One is, if you were hoping they were gonna win last night, then it’s a rough morning. If you’re like a lot of us, you grew up with a team that you forgot how to spell ‘World Series’ much less have your team in game 7. You think, ‘Well, at least I have a game 7 to watch; I have a team that’s in the World Series and the game is at home.” 

First Game 7 in Cleveland
This will be only the third game 7 in the history of the Indians franchise. It’s first one ever at home. The other was the 1997 World Series, they lost to the Marlins in Miami and the was in 2007 and that’s when they lost in Fenway Park to Boston in the ALCS.

Tortured fan bases
“If you’re a Cubs fan, you’re thinking, 'It’s been 108 years since my team won the World Series and you know what’s going to happen? They’ll be down 3-1; I’ll have written them off. Then they will have come back and won two and then they’ll lose in game 7 just to torture me again.'

And if you’re an Indians fan, you’re thinking, 'Wwell they haven't won since 1948 and here they are, up 3-1 to the Cubs and they can’t finish the deal.'

So, one of these fan bases is going go to home and go, ‘I know something like this was going to happen!’ And the other fan base is going to wake up and say, ‘I can’t believe my team actually did it,’" Pluto says. 

The Indians will start ace Corey Kluber tonight, who is 4-1 with an 0.89 ERA in the postseason. But, he'll be pitching on just three days' rest. "I think that was part of the problem Josh Tomlin had in game 6," Pluto says. Still, he says, "I don’t think much is going to get to Corey Kluber."

Another positive for the Indians -- Relief pitching aces Andrew Miller and Cody Allen didn’t pitch in last night’s lopsided loss, so they’ll be fresh for game 7.

Still, Pluto says a big concern though is the Cubs' offense. "Chicago can really hit. All the sudden they seemed to be getting their bats going in game 5 and they just pounded the ball on Tuesday night."

A game of attrition
Pluto says the wear and tear of the season has really taken its toll on these teams.

"The season for the Indians started Feb. 20 in Arizona. Here we are and it’s early November and they’re still playing. Counting the preseason they have played 207 games and it’s almost like which of these two teams still has one big long kick in them.

I'll be very curious to see what the crowd is like. There were a lot of Cubs fans there in game 6. They were buying tickets on the secondary market for big money. I heard that somebody was paying $19,000 a seat from Chicago to get a coupe tickets right behind the Cubs dugout for game 7."

Awesome agony
Pluto reflects back on a moment during the regular season when the Indians were in the pennant race for the Central Division. "I remember at one point after a game, a very tired, haggard Terry Francona said this, after they won: ‘You know what this is like? It’s like awesome agony.'

It’s one more time for awesome agony and hopefully tomorrow morning we’ll just be saying, it’s awesome," Pluto says.