It was weird watching the Indians at 1:05 on a Saturday, but I can’t complain because it means my Saturday night is free. Both teams are glad that their Saturday nights are free since it gives everyone more time to rest before the rubber match tomorrow.
The first inning passed with little fanfare. That changed when Jose Ramirez hit one just over the right field wall and out of reach of Ichiro Suzuki for his first Major League home run. Granted, the 2 run shot would not have been a homer in any other ballpark, but it still counts and J-Ram touched ‘em all for the first time in The Show. In case you were curious about other first homers at Yankee Stadium, here’s some info courtesy of IPL’s human media guide, Ryan McCrystal:
— Ryan McCrystal (@TribeFanMcC) August 9, 2014
The score stayed 2-0 for a while as Corey Kluber and Brandon McCarthy made few mistakes. Klubot was his usual self, striking out ten over six innings, marking his seventh double digit strikeout game of the season. He only allowed four hits, though one of them was number 3,431 in Derek Jeter‘s career, moving him ahead of Honus Wagner for sixth place in baseball history. McCarthy made a mistake to Ramirez, but other than that posted 6 1/3 innings of quality pitching.
Rich Hill and Chase Whitley were able to get out of a bases loaded jam to keep the score at 2-0 entering stretch time. In other words, the Indians had their chances to extend the lead in the 7th, but they could not convert due to Nick Swisher‘s lack of speed. Swisher was taken out of the game in the following inning, after his tortoise-like wheels were exposed.
Because of the team’s inability to score a run with the bases loaded in the seventh, Michael Brantley had to lead off the eighth inning. He took Whitley deep with a drive that bounced off the foul pole in right field. For a player who had never hit more than 10 homers in a season, Brantley has found his power stroke, hitting 17 in 113 games this year.
Bryan Shaw pitched the 8th and looked like his regular usage out of the pen finally caught up with him. He didn’t allow a run, but he allowed a double, hit a batter, and needed 23 pitches to get three outs. He still got the job done, but the fatigue will haunt him in the form of runs sooner rather than later.
Cody Allen fanned Stephen Drew to open the final frame for the home team. He was able to induce a Martin Prado ground out and set Ichiro down swinging to end the game. Tribe pitchers threw 150 pitches and struck out 15 Yankee batters en route to a shutout and a needed win.
Kluber, with his 13th win, is now tied for the American League lead in the category. He’s making all of the All-Star Game voters look foolish for not picking him. McCarthy is tagged with the loss even though he posted a quality start; this is his first loss in pinstripes. Allen nailed down his 15th save of 2014. The Indians resume play tomorrow when Carlos Carrasco faces off against Hiroki Kuroda. A win would get the Indians back to .500 while a loss will bury them even further in the Wild Card standings. First pitch is at 1:05 for Derek Jeter‘s final regular season contest against the Indians.