DETROIT – Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Mike Clevinger told a hilarious story about Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera calling his shot when they faced off in 2016.
Clevinger was a rookie making his 16th appearance for the Indians on Sept. 27, 2016. The Tigers had already scored two runs in the first inning when Cabrera ripped a two-run double off of Clevinger.
Cabrera came to the plate again in the second inning with two outs and James McCann and Cameron Maybin on base.
"I've told this story multiple times," Clevinger said, laughing. "It's still pretty cool.
"It was my rookie year and I was already, like, pretty shaky every time I went to the mound, and Miggy looks over at Tito (Indians manager Terry Francona), and he goes, 'Second pitch, change-up, home run right-center.'
"Tito looked at (Indians pitching coach) Mickey (Callaway) and was, like, you know, 'I hope he's f------ kidding.' And Mickey goes, 'Me, too.'
"Second pitch, I threw him a 1-0 change-up -- right-on-right change-up, thinking I'd be tricky third (at-bat). 'I got him,' and he parked that thing to left-center and he gave him a, like, 'I missed it by a little bit.' Like, gave him that as he crossed home plate."
Video shows Cabrera blasting the pitch into the center field bushes, about 20 feet to the left-center side of the 420-foot sign in straightaway center field.
As Cabrera jogged to home plate, video shows him smiling into the dugout.
"They didn't tell me that story until end of next spring training to make sure I didn't (get it in my head)," Clevinger said. "I wasn't even thinking then. I was just throwing. I was just chunking and not trying to sweat that much and breathe too hard."
He told the story to teammate Trevor Bauer, who produces player-driven content on his Watch Momentum platform.
You can watch Clevinger tell the full story and see the play in the video below.
WARNING: There is some explicit language in the video.
Mike Clevinger (@Mike_Anthony13) talks to @BauerOutage about the time @MiguelCabrera called his shot, and hit home run off of him his rookie year 😂 #WatchMomentum #Baseball @MLB @Indians @Tigers pic.twitter.com/2TFbifyPyD— Momentum (@Watch_Momentum) February 28, 2019