In their first game of the season at full capacity, Cleveland put on a show for the home crowd, blasting the Seattle Mariners, 7-0, behind a brilliant start from Aaron Civale.
Civale loaded the bases with two outs in the first inning but managed to get out of it with no damage done. After that, he was on cruise control for the next seven innings, retiring the final 22 batters he faced and notching a career-high 11 strikeouts. The Mariners had no answers for his arsenal of pitches, as he registered a 44% CSW% on his cutter, a 48% CSW% on his curveball, and a 40% CSW% on his splitter. It was by far his best outing of the season.
Aaron Civale, Beautiful 76mph Curveball.— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) June 12, 2021
[Retired the last 22 consecutive batters.] pic.twitter.com/eEqshPuNdq
Offensively, contributions came from up and down the lineup, but Amed Rosario was the star of the show. Cleveland has had three games this season in which a player has recorded four hits and Amed is responsible for all of them, completing the hat trick Friday night. He has been on a tear over the last month, slashing .322/.371/.467 over his last 24 games.
Bobby Bradley has also made a noticeable impact since getting called up to fill the void at first base. He has only played in four games for Cleveland, but he has notched six hits in those four games and scored at least one run in each of them. Bradley reached base four times Friday night and plated three of their seven runs, including a home run and a bases loaded walk.
Cleveland made quick work of Justin Dunn. The Mariners’ starting pitcher was making his first June start after producing solid results for Seattle in the month of May. But Cleveland made life difficult for him from the start. Cesar Hernandez drew a leadoff walk in the first inning with an assist from the home plate umpire after what should have been a called third strike turned into the first of four of straight balls. Back-to-back singles from Amed Rosario and José Ramírez loaded the bases with no outs, setting the stage for Eddie Rosario’s RBI single as everyone went from station to station. Bobby Bradley drew a walk, plating another run to push their lead to 2-0.
Harold Ramirez recorded the first out of the inning with a strikeout, but Josh Naylor restarted the hit parade with an RBI single to center field. Two runs would have scored if catcher José Godoy hadn’t blocked the plate before he had the ball, preventing Eddie Rosario from scoring from second. In total, Cleveland tallied four hits, two walks, and three runs in the first inning alone.
Cleveland went to work on Dunn again in the second inning. Bradley Zimmer legged out an infield single to lead off the inning, though the replay crew had to step in and rightfully award him first base after he was called out on the field. He eventually came around to score on an RBI single by José Ramírez, extending Cleveland’s lead to 4-0. The next inning, which would be Dunn’s last, Bobby Bradley blasted a solo home run to right center to make it 5-0.
The third inning also delivered the scariest moment of the game as Dunn struck Austin Hedges in the head with a 93 mph fastball. His helmet took the brunt of it and he remained in the game until the fifth inning, when René Rivera took over behind the dish for precautionary reasons.
Thank God Austin Hedges is okay. He's still in the game too. pic.twitter.com/NzQVLle6rw— Justin Groc (@jgroc) June 12, 2021
Cleveland tacked on a pair of two-out runs in the sixth inning, sparked by an Amed Rosario single and a José Ramírez walk. Bobby Bradley lined an RBI grounder through the shift to left-center, before Harold Ramirez plated another run with a sharp RBI single to right field.