The Indians held off the rallying Royals in the late innings to win 5-4, completing a homestand that saw the team win seven out of ten games and sneak closer to the Minnesota Twins in the standings. At worst, the Indians will remain three games back of the Twins, but if the A’s manage to mount a rally they might sneak to within two of the division lead.
An account of a game of baseball
Early on it looked like Zach Plesac might have a rough outing. In the first he got quick two outs but then walked a couple of guys. He wasn’t missing by much, but it was clear that he couldn’t locate the way he wanted to. He stalked around the mound, frustrated. He gave up a double to Cheslor Cuthbert to give the Royals an early lead but escaped further damage thanks to a strong scoop and throw by Josè Ramìrez.
He avoided allowing any runs in the second inning, but the cumulative pitch count through two frames rose to 51. For a while it appeared that the Tribe would need to reach into the bullpen early. This felt even more certain when Jorge Soler took Plesac deep for a run in the top of the third.
Good news: that really represented the last of his troubles today. He needed only 55 pitches to navigate the next four innings, allowing a single baser runner. In six innings of work he allowed four hits and those two first-inning walks, while striking out six and earning two runs.
The Indians tried the game up in the third. Kevin Plawecki reached on a throwing error by Arteaga. The Tribe made them pay, as Lindor hit a two-run bomb on a low curveball that he just kind of poked. Somehow, it went 380 feet anyway. Good things happen when you put the barrel on the ball and are also one of the most talented players in a generation.
Ramìrez hit a solo home run to give the Indians the lead in the top of the sixth. It’s his fifth home run this month, which matches his entire total from opening day until the end of June. I think it’s safe to say that he might have figured something out.
The inning continued to favor the Tribe. Jake Bauers walked, advanced on a sacrifice bunt by Mike Freeman, and scored when Kevin Plawecki hit a single. Plawecki later scored when Oscar Mercado blooped a single to center.
The Royals made a little bit of a run at the tribe when Cuthbert hit an RBI single off of Adam Cimber and Brad Hand coughed up a solo home run, but that’s all that the Royals managed to get. A scoreless frame from Nick Goody and some battling by Brad Hand for the save sealed the victory
Tribe Tide Pods
- Soler robbed a home run from Jason Kipnis in the fourth inning. Later in the game Kipnis was robbed of another base hit on a sharp liner back to the pitcher that ended up finding leather. Kipnis didn’t go entirely without today, as he doubled to lead off the fourth.
- Lindor obliterated a foul ball into the stands along the right field line today. I couldn’t see if it hit anybody, but if it did they’re definitely in a lot of pain. It took Lindor a while to recompose himself and step into the box.
- Jake Bauers didn’t get a hit today, but he did draw two walks. Coming into today he’d hit .333/.373/.438 in the month of July, though that’s partially buoyed by a .429 BABIP in the span.