Ubaldo Brightest Star as Tribe Shuts Down Texas; Indians 6, Rangers 0
Dave Roberts | On 28, Jul 2013
On this beautiful Sunday afternoon in Cleveland, the Indians sought to break out the brooms against the Texas Rangers with a three-game sweep. On the mound for the Indians was righty Ubaldo Jimenez matched up against Alexi Ogando.
What unfolded was a pitching gem for Jimenez and the Indians as they shut out the Rangers in back to back games and clinched the sweep by a final score of 6-0.
The Rangers got a threat going early when Elvis Andrus continued his 37-game hitting streak off Indians pitching by lining a one-out double to left. Nelson Cruz then followed with a walk but Jimenez managed to dance out of danger getting Adrian Beltre to ground into a double play.
The Indians followed similarly with back-to-back one out singles by Nick Swisher and Jason Kipnis in the bottom of the first but Ogando managed to get Asdrubal Cabrera to ground into a force-out at second and then Michael Brantley to fly out to end the threat.
Jimenez managed to cruise through the second, third, and fourth innings setting down the Rangers in order.
Meanwhile Ogando continued to dance in and out of danger all night. The Indians tried again in the third when Yan Gomes had a leadoff single to center before Michael Bourn popped into a fielder’s choice that put him on at first with one out. Swisher knocked his second single moving Bourn to second, Kipnis flew out to right for the second out, and advanced Bourn to third but Ogando emerged unscathed after getting Cabrera to fly out.
Ogando finally managed to have a brief inning as he retired the Indians in order in the fourth.
Jimenez got into some trouble in the fifth when he allowed a single to A.J. Pierzynski and then walked David Murphy to start the inning. Jurickson Profar laid down a sac bunt advancing the runners to second and third with one out. Luckily, Jimenez managed to dance out of danger retiring Mitch Moreland and Leonys Martin to end the inning.
The Indians finally managed to breakthrough in their half of the fifth when Bourn walked with two outs. Swisher shot his third hit of the game to center that moved Bourn to third and set the stage for Kipnis to line a RBI single to right to plate Bourn and put the Tribe up 1-0. That would be it for Ogando as manager Ron Washington went to the pen for lefty reliever Robbie Ross who struck out Cabrera to end the inning.
Jimenez came out for the sixth and issued a leadoff walk to Ian Kinsler before retiring the side to the end the inning.
The bats came up again for the Tribe in the sixth off Ross as Brantley and Carlos Santana had back-to-back singles to start the inning. Raburn flew out for the first out and advanced Brantley to third. Mike Aviles pinch-hit for Chisenhall with one out but fouled out to Moreland before Gomes came through with an RBI single to put the Tribe up 2-0. The Indians were not done yet as Bourn lined a double to center that plated two more putting the Tribe up 4-0.
Jimenez came out once again in the seventh and kept dealing as he set down the Rangers in order again.
The Rangers went to the pen again and brought out righty Tanner Scheppers to replace Ross and he made quick work retiring the Indians in order for the first time since the fourth.
Jimenez capped off the brilliant start with a final one-two-three inning in the eighth before calling it a day.
Righty Ross Wolf came on in relief for the Rangers in the eighth and he was greeted by Santana laced a single to center. After striking out Raburn for the first out, Aviles connected for a two-run home run and putting the Tribe up 6-0. Gomes kept the bats rolling with a double and advanced to third on a Bourn ground out but Swisher grounded out to end the inning.
The Indians made two changes in the ninth, bringing on righty Vinnie Pestano in relief and Drew Stubbs as a defensive replacement in right field. Pestano subsequently walked Andrus to start the inning but managed to get Nelson Cruz to ground into a double play before striking out Adrian Beltre to lock in the win.
The win goes to Jimenez (8-5) who tossed eight innings of two hit baseball striking out six and walking two. Meanwhile the loss is tagged on Ogando (4-3). With the sweep, it is the first time the Indians have swept the Rangers at home since 1980.
Looking ahead, the Indians (56-48) look to continue the successful home stand with a four game series with the Chicago White Sox (40-61). The series opener tomorrow night features Zach McAllister (4-6, 3.57 ERA) for the Indians against John Danks (2-8, 4.81 ERA) at 7:05pm.
Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images