Suspect Calls Shut Down Salazar and Tribe; Twins 3, Indians 1
Bob Toth | On 23, Sep 2015
A questionable ball four call against Danny Salazar spiraled into a three-run third inning and that would be all Minnesota would need on Tuesday as Ervin Santana and the Twins shut down the Cleveland Indians, 3-1.
It was another loss that the Indians could ill afford to suffer as the team has long since been in crunch time. The loss dropped the club back under the .500 mark at 74-75 and, coupled by wins from the Twins and the Los Angeles Angels, they fell two and a half games and two games respectively behind two of the teams in front of them in the American League Wild Card race. The Indians kept pace with the Houston Astros, who lost against L.A. The Twins pulled within two of Houston for the second Wild Card spot.
After two quick outs in the third, Salazar threw what he thought was strike three to Eduardo Escobar. Instead, home plate umpire Tom Hallion ruled it ball four, and the next batter, Aaron Hicks, doubled to left-center, just off of the glove of a diving Michael Brantley, who suffered an injury to his right shoulder on the play and left after his at bat in the fourth. Hicks scored on a double to center by Brian Dozier and Joe Mauer knocked him in with a double to give the Twins a huge three-spot, the only blemish against Salazar in six innings of work.
Santana would do the rest, limiting the Indians to one run on five hits with seven strikeouts over seven-plus innings. The lone Tribe run scored in the fifth as Yan Gomes doubled, moved to third on a grounder by Abraham Almonte, and scored on an infield single by Jose Ramirez that went off of the glove of first baseman Mauer.
W: E. Santana (6-4)
L: D. Salazar (13-9)
S: Kevin Jepsen (13)
Photo: Hannah Foslien/Getty Images