CLEVELAND -- A two-game winning streak might not be cause for celebration, but the Indians were certainly excited to just let the loss column be for awhile.
Prior to taking the final two contests in Texas, the Tribe had dropped eight straight and 16 of the past 20 games. For manager Terry Francona and his players, that grind was no simple one to handle, which made it nice to return to Progressive Field following a pair of wins.
"It helps, certainly. We show up every day to win," Francona said. "When [losses] start building, everybody feels it, myself included. But you have to be able to weather those things and come through them. Those things wear on you. It's human nature. If they didn't, that means you don't care. And we take what we're doing very, it's very personal. I know this is the way we make our living and everything, but it's so much past that, we care so much about it that it hurts -- it hurts a lot. I like this team so much. For their sake, and our sake, I want them to have results, you know, the results they're looking for."
On May 21, Cleveland began a portion of the schedule that brought 22 games against opponents with winning records, all to be played in a span of 23 days. The Indians went 6-16 in that stretch and were outscored, 119-90. They entered Friday trailing Detroit by 4 1/2 games in the American League Central.
"I saw nothing during that streak that made me think that this isn't going to be a good team," Francona said. "We fought through it. There were times when we found a way to lose as opposed to a way to win, but I didn't see guys giving up, things like that. It gave me reason to want to continue believing in them. First of all, that's what I want to do, but there was nothing that happened that made me feel any different."
Mark Emery is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.