On a cool, mist-soaked Tuesday night in Cleveland three numbers, two players, and a Tom Hamilton quote in the eighth inning stood out.
The numbers: 23, 46, and 119. The players: Corey Kluber and Michael Brantley. And the (para-phrased) quote: “The Indians defense has been outstanding tonight. And over the past month it’s no longer been a liability.”
23: Ace right-hander – and potential real life Terminator – Corey Kluber had his first lead at home since the 23rd of May.
46: The Houston Astros entered Tuesday night’s contest with an impressive streak of 46 consecutive games with at least one extra-base hit, a streak that was eventually snapped by the three-headed trio of Kluber, Zach McAllister, and Bryan Shaw.
119: A season high number of pitches by Kluber as he bobbed-and-weaved his way through six-and-two-thirds innings while allowing just five hits, fanning seven, and walking a pair.
Along with the former fourth round pick, Michael Brantley continued to shine in the heart of the Tribe’s lineup, going 3-for-4 with a pair of singles and solo dinger in the sixth inning off hard-throwing Houston rookie Vincent Velasquez. The 28-year-old outfielder is batting .293/.365/.425 on the year.
Platoon outfielder David Murphy and enigmatic first Carlos Santana also chipped in two hits apiece as well.
As far as Hamilton’s quote, the voice of the Tribe has been spot on – with the recent promotions of defensive wunderkind’s Francisco Lindor and Giovanny Urshela. And it’s not shocking in the least bit either.
For the Astros, though, Preston Tucker and Evan Gattis chipped in a pair of hits, and Hank Conger and Alex Presley added a base knock.
The Tribe takes on Astros tonight, for the third game of the series, as Trevor Bauer takes on Dan Straily at 7:10.