Terry Francona, Carl Willis Victimize Indians With Bizarre Bullpen Mix-Up

Terry Francona, Carl Willis Victimize Indians With Bizarre Bullpen Mix-Up

For the Cleveland Indians, the 7-4 loss to Reds Tuesday night may have been the most painful of the season. The Indians needed one out to end the game, but the risky Joey Votto was due up.

Cleveland held a 4-0 lead entering the ninth, but closer Cody Allen struggled to get through the last out, leaving the game with the bases loaded. Indians manager Terry Francona wanted Oliver Perez to face Votto in a lefty-lefty matchup, but there was a miscommunication.

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But the Indians fell apart, giving up seven runs to the Reds in the top of the inning thanks, in large part, to a miscommunication between manager Terry Francona and pitching coach Carl Willis. Francona asked Willis to warm up "O.P." in the bullpen, meaning the southpaw Perez. So the wrong pitcher was called for out of the bullpen.

While Cleveland still has a comfortable 8.5-game lead on its division, moving forward, the Indians may want to consider adopting some more vibrant nicknames for their relievers to help ensure a similar mistake doesn't happen again. Cincinnati had seven straight batters reach with two outs, and the inning didn't end until Scooter Gennett ran into the third out at third base on Suarez's single. It's a wonder why Willis even thought Francona would be asking for Otero anyway, and why he didn't double-check.

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