When a baseball team gets a lot of hits, and its starting pitcher is in command, it’s a thing of beauty. So it was a pleasure to watch the Indians beat the Kansas City Royals at Progressive Field on Sunday.
How many hits? The Tribe got 18 hits and they scored 10 runs.
No, really, they did. You can look it up.
What’s more, Tribe starting pitcher Josh Tomlin threw a complete game, allowing only one run over nine innings, without walking a single Royals batter. And yes, I know that is hard to believe, but I am not (forgive me for this) joshing you.
The combination of great hitting and dominant pitching gave the Indians a rare blowout victory, beating the Royals 10-1.
Indians leadoff batter Jason Kipnis also led the hit parade, going 4 for 4 with two singles, a double, a home run, and a base on balls in five plate appearances. Michael Brantley, Carlos Santana, and Jose Ramirez each went 3 for 5. The Indians scored at least one run in each inning from the fourth to the seventh.
As for Tomlin, he pitched his best game of the season. A fifth-inning solo homer from the bat of Jorge Bonifacio accounted for the Royals’ lone run. At no point did Tomlin face a 3-2 count. It was Tomlin’s first complete game in two years. His bravura performance meant that the relief corps had nothing to do but watch the game, spit sunflower seeds, and scour the stands for attractive fans, a break they sorely needed.
The Indians will face the Royals again this coming Friday, this time in Kansas City. Tomlin is scheduled to start that game as well. In the meantime, the Indians will play host to the Oakland A’s in a four-game series which starts on Monday. Carlos Carrasco will pitch the first game.