NEW YORK — Carlos “Cookie” Carrasco’s tale of adversity did not seem evident when the 33-year-old righty stepped onto the hill at Progressive Field on Sunday. Surrounded by men in baseball uniforms and vacant seats, Carrasco could not have imagined what his life would be like on July 26, 2020 when he was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia over a year ago.
His 6’4” frame mounted to where the rubber lied and locked eyes with his target that resided 60-feet and six inches away from where he stood. After a crisp wine-up and release, Kansas City Royals leadoff hitter Whit Merrifield, swung and fouled off 94.7 mph four-seam fastball. The next pitch, Carrasco was able to get Merrifield to pop-up to right field. Next, Adalberto Mondesi.
Mondesi was the first to fall victim to one of Carrasco’s 10 strikeouts on the day. Yes, 10. In his starting debut since his leukemia diagnosis, Carrasco fanned 10 batters, giving up two runs on five hits and one walk.
Despite battling cancer in 2019, Carrasco’s outing was a testament to his love for the game and testament to the warrior he was born to be — both on and off the mound. “I never put anything really bad in my mind,” Carrasco said after his first win was solidified with a 9-2 Indians victory. “It’s always something good. And that’s what I did from Day 1 until now.”
— Carlos Carrasco (@Cookie_Carrasco) July 27, 2020
The Indians were able to salvage the last game of the series against the Royals, as they improve their record to 2-1. The tribe sits mighty high in the American League Central, alongside the reigning ALC champions Minnesota Twins and Detroit Tigers.
Designated hitter José Ramírez was the key to the Indians success on Sunday. The Baní, Dominican Republic native demolished two home runs and welcomed four RBI on the day. Francisco Lindor, Dominic Santana, Franmil Reyes and Bradley Zimmer all hauled in one RBI to give the Indians the extra push for comfort.
The Indians begin the second series of the shortened season against the Chicago White Sox on Monday. 25-year-old sophomore in the league Aaron Civale will take on White Sox 24-year-old righty Dylan Cease as we are introduced to the tail end of each squads pitching rotation. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 EDT at Progressive Field in Cleveland.
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