By the eighth inning of their game Thursday, the Cleveland Indians had two players who were a triple away from hitting for the cycle. Michael Brantley and Asdrubal Cabrera had each singled, doubled and homered, keying an offensive outburst from the Tribe and a 9-2 victory over the Twins.
Getting the triple is usually the hardest part of the cycle to achieve, but when Cabrera came up in the eighth, it looked like we might have our first cycle of the 2014 season. He lined a ball into the right field corner and chugged around the bases, winding up safe at third base as David Murphy scored from second.
Cabrera smiled and clapped when he popped up from his slide, looking like a guy who thought he just hit for the cycle. That, or he was just really happy to have his fourth hit of the day, considering he was hitting .215 headed into the game.
But wait! This was no triple, ruled the official scorer, and thus, this was no cycle. Life, as it turns out, is cruel.
Get this: the official scorer was Sheldon Ocker, a retired newspaper reporter, making his first appearance as scorekeeper. His ruling was that Cabrera doubled and advanced to third on the throw home. It seems like Ocker made the right call, but talk about an eventful first day on the job — having to take away a cycle from a batter.
What did Cabrera have to say after the game? Nothing. At all.
When Brantley came up that inning, he didn't get the triple either.
So close, Cleveland. So close. At least you have Johnny Manziel now.
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