Indians fall to 22-18
If we're being realistic, this game was over by the third inning. Sure, the Red Sox wouldn't blow the game open until the seventh when they would extend their lead to 9-0, and the Indians were technically "in it" the whole time, but anyone watching the game today will tell you that the Tribe had absolutely no shot at winning this game. It was an all-around poor showing by the Cleveland Indians; luckily, they still have a shot to win the series if they can put together a better game tomorrow.
The big story today was the starting pitching for both teams. The Cleveland Indians needed a good outing from Trevor Bauer, and the Red Sox were praying that Joe Kelly, who was recently activated from the DL, could add some type of reliability to a fairly weak starting rotation. The Red Sox got their wish, the Cleveland Indians did not. Trevor Bauer started the game in a fairly promising manner, going 1-2-3 in the first inning on 12 pitches and hitting 95-97 on the radar gun. Unfortunately, that seemed to be all he was able to do, as the rest of his pitches were not working at all. The wheels fell off for Bauer in the third inning when he gave up four straight hits (a double, followed by three singles) to give the Sox a 3-0 lead. The inning mercifully ended when backup catcher Ryan Hanigan grounded out to Juan Uribe. Things didn't get much better for Bauer when he gave up a home run to Mookie Betts in the fourth inning. Overall, Bauer's pitching line on the day was 5+ IP, 8 H, 4 ER, 2 BB, 0 K. The lack of strikeouts is a bit concerning, especially from a pitcher like Bauer who has so many plus pitches. The Red Sox are an incredibly dangerous lineup, and they completely took advantage of Bauer's lack of command.
On the flip side, Joe Kelly completely dominated the Tribe lineup the entire day. Juan Uribe, who has been having a terrible year at the plate, got the team's first hit of the day in the seventh inning when he turned on a 97 MPH fastball and split the gap between center and right field. Prior to that, the only base runners that Kelly allowed came in the fifth inning when he walked three batters to load the bases. Before the game, Red Sox manager John Farrell said that he would be keeping Kelly to about 95 pitches, and it looked like the Indians may break through and drive up Kelly's pitch count in the fifth inning. Sadly, Gimenez grounded out to end the inning and left the bases loaded, which allowed Kelly to continue through almost 2 more innings.
It should be noted that the Red Sox went ahead to score five more runs in the seventh inning thanks in large part to a grand slam by...well, would you look at that, Mookie Betts again. Betts had quite the day at the plate, going 3-for-5 and getting 5 RBIs.
Tidbits from today's game
- Joe Kelly has now given up just 1 run in 18 innings when facing the Cleveland Indians.
- Mike Napoli added another Golden Sombrero to his collection by going 0-for-4 with 4 strikeouts
- Carlos Santana decided to add more fuel to the (baseless) argument that he only hits home runs when it doesn't matter by hitting a dinger over the Green Monster in the ninth inning to help the Tribe avoid a shutout.
- Francisco Lindor made another nifty defensive play in the sixth when he overran a pop-up in shallow LF and jumped into the air and made the catch.
- Jackie Bradley Jr. has now increased his hit streak to 26 games despite getting walked 3 times today.
- On a positive note, the White Sox lost as well today, so the Tribe remains 1.5 games out of first place.