Tribe falls to 45-46
This was a tale of two games.
The first game lasted 6 innings. The Indians got the leadoff man on 3 out of 6 innings, but it did little to help them. Their best chance came in the 3rd inning when Michael Brantley moved Jason Kipnis to the 3rd with one out. But strikeouts from both Carlos Santana and Lonnie Chisenhall ended whatever small threat it had been. For the remainder of the first 6, the Indians wouldn't move a man past 2nd.
In the meantime, T.J. House would have a better game than it might appear. The official line would be 4.2IP 8H 3ER 2BB 5K, but his defense kept getting him into jams. He got through a rough first inning unscathed and breezed through the 2nd and 3rd before hitting a bump in the 4th. A difficult dive by Kipnis came up short on a single to Francisco Cervelli which was promptly followed by a 1 out HR from Zelous Wheeler. Kipnis probably could have made the play but I can't totally fault him for failing. Yangervis Solarte would piggy-back by reaching on a error by Lonnie Chisenhall. It wouldn't be his last miscue. House loaded the bases before getting out of the inning without further damage.
In the 5th he would get two quick outs before hitting Cervelli then Chisenhall fubbed a line drive hit right at him. It was ruled a hit but should have been an error. House would allow one runner to score before giving way to Vinnie Pestano to close out the inning. Vinnie would team up with Kyle Crockett to get through the 6th as well.
That is when everything changed. Recently acquired Chris Dickerson, who would go 3 for 4 on the night, led off the inning with a single, followed by singles from Roberto Perez (his first MLB hit) and Kipnis. That brought Asdrubal Cabrera to the plate. I know what you're thinking - first pitch swinging ground ball double play. Wrong. First pitch swinging, bases-clearing triple in the RF corner. All of a sudden we were tied at 3. What was a horrific baseball experience had suddenly turned glad. And it never looked back.
Michael Brantley would be robbed of a single by Jacoby Ellsbury, driving in Cabrera in the process to give the Indians the lead. Then in the 8th, the Indians would really pile on. Dickerson would get it started with a double followed by Perez's first career big league home run. This coming the pitch right after he busted down the line for what would have been a double, since he was too busy hustling to notice the ball was foul. It took a review to make it a home run, but a home run it was. I think I like this Perez fella.
Brantley and Kipnis would single before Carlos Santana, who had started the game looking lost at the plate, put an exclamation point on the game by depositing a Jim Miller fastball into the right field seats. That capped a 5 run inning, giving the Indians a 9-3 lead and the sure victory.
But just to make things sweeter, Carlos Carrasco struck out Derek Jeter in what is likely his last plate appearance in Cleveland. And then, Jeter followed that up by playing a sharply hit Brantley single off his wrist. The Jeets™ might need to ice the wrist and his ego after this one.
The Indians officially split this series with New York, but if they can pull off a series victory in any fashion in August at New York, they can take the season series. I'll drink to that.
Win Expectancy Chart:
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|23||Deep South Ken||2|