Posts By Bob Toth
Mike Clevinger was masterful on the mound for the Cleveland Indians on Saturday afternoon at Oriole Park at Camden Yards as he threw his first career complete game and shutout in a 4-0 win over the Baltimore Orioles.
For the first time in his Major League career, Clevinger pitched into and completed the ninth inning in wrapping up a two-hit shutout over the Orioles. He came into the outing with a pair of wins against Baltimore in his career. It was a strong bounce back effort for “Sunshine”, who looked sharp after giving up four runs in the fourth inning of his last start in a short no-decision for the 27-year-old right-hander.
Making his second career start in Baltimore, following last season’s five innings of two-run baseball in a win, Clevinger took command early and worked around the few problems that came his way. A first inning run gave him some room on the mound, and three home runs later would pad his advantage, with some of the pop coming from a big day at the plate from Jose Ramirez.
The Baltimore Orioles ended their six-game losing skid and claimed their sixth win of the season on Friday night, defeating the Cleveland Indians by a 3-1 final.
It was another one of those frustrating nights for the Indians’ offense, which was once again unable to produce with runners in scoring position. The cold bats allowed Dylan Bundy to work around some trouble, and a big two-run fifth by the Orioles would give Baltimore just enough to secure the win.
The Cleveland Indians will make their only trip to Camden Yards this season when they play the Baltimore Orioles for four games in a weekend wraparound series.
The Indians (9-7) make their return back to the states after a two-day vacation in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where they were hosted by the “home” Minnesota Twins in a pair of midweek games. Cleveland used strong pitching and four home runs to capture the game one win before losing a tough 2-1 decision in 16 innings on Wednesday night. They have spent more time in the last week not playing than playing, after rain outs on Saturday and Sunday and off days on Monday and Thursday. How much the lack of game activity affects consistency and routine for the club remains to be seen.
The Carolina League announced on Monday night that Lynchburg Hillcats right-hander Justin Garza had been named the league’s Pitcher of the Week for games played between April 5 and April 15.
Garza won the first Pitcher of the Week award of his career after making a pair of scoreless starts for Lynchburg, earning a win and taking a no-decision to start his 2018 season.
Last season, Shane Bieber proved that his nearly spotless record in his debut season in 2016 with the short-season Mahoning Valley Scrappers was no fluke, appearing at three different levels of the Indians organization while putting up strong numbers at each stop.
On Monday, the Akron right-hander was recognized by the Eastern League for his dominant start to the 2018 season when he was named its Pitcher of the Week for games played between April 5 and April 15.
Ryan LaMarre lined a single to center in the bottom of the 16th inning to score the winning run as the Minnesota Twins defeated the Cleveland Indians by a 2-1 final from San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Wednesday night/Thursday morning.
Fans in San Juan have waited since 2010 for Major League Baseball to return to the island. They were rewarded for their patience with a well-pitched game from one of the commonwealth’s young heroes, Jose Berrios, and Cleveland’s Carlos Carrasco, and even got seven innings of bonus baseball before the Twins delivered the walk-off hit after a costly error in the 16th by Jason Kipnis.
With Josh Tomlin on the mound in his second inning of emergency duty for the Tribe, Minnesota got a leadoff single from local Eddie Rosario. Logan Morrison sent a chopper towards Kipnis at second, but the Indians’ second baseman could not field the ball, allowing Rosario to motor to third on the error. Eduardo Escobar was intentionally walked to set up a force at the plate, but LaMarre, getting his fourth at bat off of the bench for the Twins, lined his third hit of the game into center field to score Rosario with the winning run, giving Minnesota a 2-1 win.
Corey Kluber was his usual self on the mound for Cleveland, but that story will be lost in the shuffle as Francisco Lindor led the way for the offense with a two-run home run in his return to his native Puerto Rico as the Indians defeated the Minnesota Twins by a 6-1 final on Tuesday.
Cleveland showed little rust after three straight days off as strong starting pitching from the well-rested Kluber and some explosive support from a native son powered the Indians past the Twins in the first game of their two-game series from the capital of Puerto Rico.
Playing at Hiram Bithorn Stadium in San Juan in a short series from the Caribbean, one of the island’s top baseball stars took center stage and stepped up in a big moment, giving Kluber some much needed and deserved support while bringing the packed house of 19,516 to an uproar, complete with curtain call.
Some big names to suit up for the Cleveland Indians during the last three decades have hailed from the island of Puerto Rico. The Indians’ two-game road trip to San Juan as the visiting club against the “home” Twins on Tuesday and Wednesday will mark the team’s first regular season games in Puerto Rico and will serve as a homecoming of sorts for star shortstop Francisco Lindor and catcher Roberto Perez, who both spent a portion of their lives there.
According to the historical archives known as Baseball Reference, 242 Puerto Rican-born players have stepped into the batter’s box in Major League history.