On Sunday, the Cleveland Guardians took on the Chicago White Sox in game four of their series at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Cleveland looked to win the series as they sent their ace Shane Bieber out to the mound.
Bieber gave the Guardians six innings but allowed six runs as the White Sox managed to pull off a series split with a 6-3 win.
Dylan Cease shut down the Guardians for six innings, allowing no runs.
After the game, Guardians manager Terry Francona shared a plausible theory for why Bieber had such a rough day during his postgame interview with Bally Sports Cleveland, citing that the long layoff could have played a role in his struggles, but that he thinks that it will ultimately help him in the long run.
Terry Francona thinks Shane Bieber's long layoff between starts may have been a factor in today's inconsistent outing, but it will also benefit him in the long run.#ForTheLand pic.twitter.com/p6fOFELkGA
— Bally Sports Cleveland (@BallySportsCLE) July 24, 2022
Tito Expresses Faith In Bieber
Francona has always been a player’s manager.
He always expresses faith in his players, even when times are tough.
But his theory is plausible.
Sometimes, a long layoff can help.
Other times, it can hurt.
Even the best starters in the game have bad outings from time to time, and Bieber is no different.
With the loss, his record deteriorated to 4-6 and his ERA went up to 3.55.
But with a long second half ahead of us, the extra rest will likely benefit Bieber in the long run, as Francona mentioned.
The Guardians will be needing him during the stretch run.
They are right in the thick of the postseason race, just three games out of first place and two games out in the Wild Card race.
With the second half upon us, the Guardians will likely be a team that tries to make a push, and Bieber will be central to that.