Tonight’s Indians game began at 6:05 PM, and I have no idea why. Usually Saturday games at Progressive Field begin at 7:05 PM, but tonight was different for some reason. No matter, I was ready to tune in at 6, only to learn that this was one of the handful of games with no television coverage in the Cleveland area.
And that was too bad for Indians fans, because it would have been a game worth watching, as the Indians beat the Rays, 7-3. After two nights of relative quiet in which the team scored three runs in each game, the Tribe offense spoke loudly again tonight. The Indians had only eight hits, but six of them were for extra bases—five doubles and a home run. The Indians were especially double-happy in the second inning, banging out three doubles, and scoring three runs, off Tampa Bay lefty starter Matt Moore. Moore also walked a batter that inning; in fact, he walked five over 4⅔ innings. Moore’s third inning wasn’t much better, as he walked two hitters, allowed two more doubles, and gave up two more runs. He left the game in the fifth inning with the Rays down by a score of 5-2.
On the other hand, Tribe starter Ubaldo Jimenez pitched a good game. He went six innings and allowed two runs, those on a fourth-inning homer from Rays DH Luke Scott. Jimenez walked two and struck out eight, matching his high mark for the season. Jimenez has gone at least six innings in each of his last seven starts. Tony Sipp and Vinnie Pestano each worked a scoreless inning. Esmil Rogers came out to pitch the ninth, as the Indians didn’t need the services of Chris Perez with a five-run lead. Rogers gave up a first-pitch homer to B. J. Upton, but retired the next three hitters; in fact, he struck out the last two men he faced.
Carlos Santana started the game at first base for the Indians and had a good night at the plate, going 1 for 2 with a double, an RBI, a run scored, and two walks. And about that home run the Indians hit? That came from the bat of Shelley Duncan, who has now hit four homers in his last six games. I guess fathering twin boys must have done something for his self-confidence! Whatever the cause, it’s always great to see a player come up with some home run swag.
Tomorrow the Indians take on the Rays at 1:05. The game WILL be televised.
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