Defense and Pitching Propel Indians Past White Sox Yet Again
Tuesday, August 16th
Corey Kluber disappoints White Sox starter Jose Quintana’s chase for his 10th win with a beautiful 6 inning performance, giving up only a solo shot to Justin Morneau in the 3-1 victory. The opposing Quintana pitched well, but small ball helped the Tribe go up early by RBI’s from Francisco Lindor and Mike Napoli, who continue to make pitchers look foolish. The infield also turned heads making great plays look routine seemingly all night. Jason Kipnis, who had 3 hits, gave some breathing room with an RBI single in the 7th to cap off the offense’s night. While the highlight of the game was Kluber’s dominant 7 strike out performance for his 4th consecutive win, the bullpen came up big in a tight game late with 2 quick innings from Andrew Miller, followed by Cody Allen for his 23rd save.
Kluber gave up plenty of hits but continued to leave them stranded all night giving the Tribe their 7th straight win against the Sox. Going 5-1 on their homestand, the Indians, with a Tigers loss to KC, now own a 6 game lead over Detroit. Also, Mike Napoli extended his hit streak to 16 games, which is the best active streak in the league.
This game gave a good glimpse of what the Indians may be able to achieve in the playoffs. Even though the White Sox are struggling and very beat up, great starting pitching, a deep, reliable bullpen, beautiful defense, and getting on the board early are keys to winning in October. With Salazar coming back into the rotation set for Thursday, the Indians should see the rest of their bullpen boost through August. The Indians continue their series against the Sox Wednesday night, looking for win number 8 against their favorite rival this year.