Crisp’s Big Game Helps Oakland Sweep Tribe; Athletics 7, Indians 0
By Ryan Hohman
For the second time in less than 24 hours, a former Indian helped the A’s bury the Tribe. Last night it was Bartolo Colon and today it was ex-Cleveland Indian Coco Crisp. Crisp had three hits, including a three-run homerun, and drove in five runs as the Oakland Athletics completed a three game sweep of the Cleveland Indians 7-0 on Sunday.
While Crisp had his way at the plate, Oakland starting pitcher Jarrod Parker had his way on the mound, working his way out of jams early and cruising late to throw eight innings of shutout ball and improved to 8-7 (3.48) on the season.
Justin Masterson, coming off back-to-back wins with a 1.38 over his last two outings, struggled early and was charged with all seven runs in the defeat. Cleveland’s record falls to 54-67 with the loss. They’ve lost five straight and 18 of their last 22 games.
The Indians had plenty of chances early but could not plate a run.
Speedy rookie Ezequiel Carrera led off the game with a bunt single and then stole second base in a bang-bang play where the replay hinted that he may have been out. Asdrubal Cabrera advanced Carrera to third with a ground out to second, but Carrera was left stranded after Parker struck out Shin-Soo Choo and got Carlos Santana to fly out to left.
In the second, the Indians got their leadoff man on base once again and failed to capitalize. After Michael Brantley singled to right to start the inning, Casey Kotchman flew out to right. Brent Lillibridge then drew a walk to give the Tribe two on with one out, but Jack Hannahan popped out to shortstop on the infield fly rule and Lou Marson grounded out to short to help Parker get out of the jam.
The A’s had two on with no outs in the bottom of the second inning by way of a Yoenis Cespedes walk and Chris Carter single on a soft grounder to third. But that threat would end quickly when Brandon Moss flew out to center and Derek Norris grounded into a double play.
After Carrera and Cabrera both grounded out to start the third, Choo and Santana hit back-to-back singles and all of a sudden the Tribe had runners at first and third with two outs. But once again, Parker got Brantley to ground out and keep the game knotted at zero.
The A’s would finally crack the scoreboard in the third. Masterson walked Cliff Pennington to start the inning, then Jemile Weeks laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Pennington to second. Coco Crisp followed with the game’s first clutch hit – a single to right – to bring Pennington around to score and give Oakland a 1-0 lead.
Oakland tacked on another run in the fourth on a solo homerun by Brandon Moss. With two outs, the A’s 28-year-old left fielder crushed a belt high fastball into the right field seats for his career best 13th homerun of the season.
After retiring the Indians 1-2-3 in the fifth, the A’s got a big inning thanks to ex-Indian Coco Crisp. Cliff Pennington got things started with a single to left. Jemile Weeks followed with a bunt single to third. With two on and no outs, Crisp cleared the bases with a three-run blast over the right field wall – his 7th homerun of the season – to give the A’s a 5-0 lead.
Choo led off the sixth with a single. After back-to-back fly outs by Santana and Brantley, Kotchman singled to center, moving Santana to third, but both would be left stranded after Lillibridge grounded into a force out to shortstop.
After homering in the fourth, Brandon Moss led off the sixth with a single to right. Derek Norris struck out and Pennington reached on a fielder’s choice. With two outs and Pennington at first, it looked like Masterson would get out of the inning, until Jemile Weeks whacked a double down the left field line to score Pennington from first and extend the A’s lead to 6-0. Weeks finished the game with two hits, scoring twice with one RBI.
Weeks was the last batter Masterson would face as Manny Acta brought in Emil Rogers from the bullpen.
Coco Crisp welcomed Rogers to the game with a single to center to score Weeks from second and give his team a 7-0 lead. Josh Donaldson followed with a double to left to move Crisp to third, but Rogers was able to get Josh Reddick to ground out to first to end the inning.
Masterson, who fell to 9-11 (4.73) on the season, was charged with seven runs on nine hits while striking out five and walking one over 5.2 innings. He threw 101 pitches.
Chris Perez got in an inning of work in the eighth, relieving Rogers, who gave up three hits while walking one and striking out one over 1.1 innings.
Ryan Cook relieved Parker in the ninth to close out the game. Parker gave up no runs on six hits while walking one and fanning two on the day.
Choo and Kotchman had two hits apiece for Cleveland, who tallied seven hits as a team for the game.
Cleveland’s west coast trip continues Monday, August 20 at Seattle where RHP Ubaldo Jimenez (9-12, 5.62) will take on RHP Kevin Millwood (4-10, 4.28). The first pitch is scheduled for 10:10PM ET STO/WTAM/IRN.
Photo: AP Photo/Ben Margot