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Good times back for the Tribe

HafnerCLEVELAND -- There's plenty of talk here about empty seats but I don't know what all the fuss is about. I walked into Progressive Field Friday night and it seemed a lot like, oh, 1995 or 1997 or 2007. There wasn't a sellout but there were 33,000+ in the house -- and the walkup crowd was more than 8,500.

And the Indians won again in walkoff fashion, stunning Eric Wedge's Mariners, 5-4, on a two-run homer in the bottom of the ninth from Travis Hafner. The place erupted when the ball cleared the center-field fence and so did Hafner's teammates (right). I've been here for many of these kinds of games over the years but this one pushes near the top of the list.  Click here to watch the dramatic video.

"We're having a blast," Hafner said. "Winning is obviously a big part of that when you have good chemistry on a team. It makes coming to the park a lot of fun again."

These guys are for real and the AL Central is a weak, weak division. The Tigers might be their only challenger. One more starting pitcher at the trade deadline and the Tribe might turn this into a runaway.

---Mike Harrington
(www.twitter.com/bnharrington) 

Photo: Associated Press

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About Inside Pitch

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has covered the Buffalo Bisons since 1992 and Major League Baseball since 1995. A member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, Harrington has reported on more than 30 MLB postseason series — including every game of the World Series in this century — and all three of the Bisons' championship runs in their modern era. He is a connoisseur of the famous Stadium Mustard at Cleveland's Progressive Field.

@BNHarrington | mharrington@buffnews.com


Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered the Bisons for The Buffalo News since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz | amoritz@buffnews.com

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