On a night when the Indians inducted two prominent members of the team’s glory years in the ’90′s into the Indians Hall of Fame, former second-baseman Carlos Baerga and former general-manager John Hart may have felt as if they took a trip back in time. Like many games in their tenures here, the offense bailed out the pitching, and such was the case tonight.
In a game that felt like it should’ve been a lot more comfortable than it ultimately was, the Indians prevailed in a win that was gifted to them by Twins starter PJ Walters (.2 INN/6 ER/1 H/5 BB). In an inning that lasted almost an hour total and Walters throwing forty-six pitches, almost everyone figured that this would be a cakewalk (I amuse myself) for the Tribe. There were so many Indians baserunners in the first that Walters probably felt like he was being subjected to a Tribal Conga line.
Unfortunately, the Indians weren’t much better. Corey Kluber was nowhere near as sharp as he was during his previous two starts, as he labored through his outing (5.2 INN/3 ER/4 SO/1 BB). The bullpen also struggled again as Nick Hagadone, Brian Shaw and Vinnie Pestano all had bumpy appearances. Who woulda thunk that it would be Rich Hill who would be the one who saved the Indians bacon on a night when virtually no one on the pitching staff was a sure thing?
Since this was Carlo Baerga induction night, Jason Kipnis put on quite a show in front of the man who once manned the second-base bag long before we all became Kipnises. He came up a homer short of the cycle as continues his white-hot stretch.
But an ugly win is still a win, and four straight series wins are even better. The Tribe will go for the sweep tomorrow as Carlos Carrasco will take to the hill against the Twins’ Mike Pelfrey.
W: Corey Kluber (6-4); L: PJ Walters (2-3); S: Vinnie Pestano (3)
Player of the Game: Michael Bourn (3-4; 3 RBI)