Indians 5, Royals 2
Indians improve to 89-63
This Carlos Santana guy is having a heck of a season. Here’s hoping it continues well into October.
Santana homered and drove in four to lead the Indians to a 5-2 victory and series sweep of the hated Kansas City Royals.
Jason Kipnis got the fun started with a solo home run in the first. Kipnis went down and golfed out a slow breaking ball off of Royals starter Jason Vargas to give the Tribe the early lead. After a Francisco Lindor walk, Santana doubled to the gap in right-center field to plate another run for the Tribe.
In all honesty, after that first inning, it felt like the Indians were on their way to putting up a bunch of runs. The Royals had soft-tossing Jason Vargas on the mound, who was making just his second start since Tommy John surgery and who had already struggled in the opening frame. But, no dice, as the Tribe’s offense sputtered plenty. Vargas ended up going only four innings due to a limited pitch count, but gave up just those two hits and two runs in the first. On the night, the Indians finished with just five hits but thankfully it worked out thanks to good ol’ Carlos.
After Vargas’ exit, the Royals turned to right-hander Dillon Gee. Gee got out of a jam in the fifth inning thanks to really amazing and fun bunt from the Tribe (no, it was not), but hit Kipnis to start the sixth and then walked Lindor. After a Mike Napoli pop up, Santana hit a towering fly ball that ended up in the first row in the right field stands for a huge three-run blast. The homer was Santana’s 34th of the year and it put the Tribe on top for good.
Cleveland starter Mike Clevinger pitched well enough, going five innings and allowing two earned runs. The rookie nibbled plenty and had some command issues at times, but other than allowing a two-run homer to skinny Alcides Escobar, he again showed the ability to work himself out of some jams.
Dan Otero earned the win, his fifth of the year, for following up Clevinger with two scoreless innings. Cody Allen closed it out for his 29th save of the season. The Tribe’s magic number moves to 4.