The Indians were just 2-7 this season when Justin Masterson allowed more than two runs, so when he allowed four runs on seven walks and failed to finish the 5th inning, things weren’t looking good for the Tribe. But, finally, the Tribe’s offense stepped up for their ace.
The offensive performance was exciting not only because of the rare support of Masterson, but also the fact the support came up and down the lineup. Six starters collected at least two hits and the Tribe scored two or more runs against four different Rays pitchers.
The Indians are now in position to take three of four in Tampa if they can steal one against Rays’ ace David Price on Thursday afternoon.
A few other notes on the game…
- The Indians won a game in which their starting pitcher yielded seven walks for the first time since 2008 when Jeremy Sowers walked seven, also against the Rays. And it was the first such win on the road since 2002, when the Tribe won at Oakland despite seven walks in just 2 2/3 innings from Jaret Wright.
- Carlos Santana homered for the first time since May 15, ending a 40-game homerless drought, which was exactly double the previous longest drought of his career. Hopefully this is a positive sign for Santana, because I can’t imagine the Indians as legitimate contenders without him playing a key role in the heart of the lineup.
- Vinnie Pestano picked up his 26th hold of the season, moving him into sole possession of 4th place on a Tribe’s all-time single-season list. Barring injury, he should shatter Rafael Betancourt‘s record of 31 set in 2007.