Tomlin, Homers Push Tribe Past Texas; Indians 8, Rangers 3
Mike B. | On 07, Jun 2014
Better late than never.
Both could be said about the Cleveland Indians road woes this season and Josh Tomlin. Tomlin, who was not added to the 25-man roster until the end of April, pitched eight, strong innings and Yan Gomes and Carlos Santana provided the offensive punch to push the Tribe to an 8-3 victory Saturday afternoon. Cleveland’s victory was their 10th road win of the season. They are the last team in Major League Baseball to log their 10th road win of the season.
Texas took an early lead in the bottom of the third inning when a pair of singles set up a sacrifice fly by Elvis Andrus, giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead. The Indians came right back in the top of the fourth to tie the game when Jason Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall each started the inning with singles and Kipnis hustled home on David Murphy’s sacrifice fly.
Cleveland took the lead for good in the top of the sixth inning, courtesy of the long ball. Murphy and Santana each singled before Gomes hit a three-run home run to center field to give the Indians a 4-1 lead. Gomes’ seventh home run of the season was a 420-foot homer to center field.
Tomlin ran into a little trouble in the bottom half of the sixth inning Adrain Beltre doubled home Andrus and then scored on a wild pitch to cut Cleveland’s lead to 4-3. Tomlin, the gritty Texan, was able to hold the lead and complete the inning. He’d be quickly rewarded in the top of the seventh when the Indians would explode for four runs.
Michael Brantley started the inning with a double to deep right field and came home an out later when Chisenhall singled to center field. Murphy singled to advance Chisenhall and put runners on the corners. Pinch-hitter, Ryan Raburn, grounded into a fielder’s choice to force in another run before Santana hit a two-run home run to right field to make it 8-3, Cleveland.
Tomlin (4-2) kept the Rangers scuffling most of the day, pitching eight innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, no walks and striking out five. He started to the bottom of the ninth inning, but when Beltre led off the frame with a single, Indians manager Terry Francona went to John Axford to finish the game.
Rangers’ starter, Nick Tepesch was saddled with the loss. He pitched five and one-third innings, allowing four runs on eight hits, four walks and a strike out. The crushing blow for Tepesch was Gomes’ three-run homer in the sixth inning.
Cleveland banged out eight hits, keyed by Chisenhall’s two and Murphy’s three hits. Santana was 2-for-2, with two walks, reaching base in each of his plate appearances in just his second game back from a concussion. Tomlin’s effort was instrumental and one Tribe fans have grown accustomed to when he takes the mound.
Sunday, Cleveland will send Justin Masterson (3-4, 4.72) to the mound in hopes of his second straight start. Masterson was brilliant on Monday against the Boston Red Sox. Texas will counter with left-hander, Joe Saunders (0-1, 3.68) in the third game of the four game set.
Photo: Jim Cowsert/AP Photo