Pair of Late Cleveland Blasts Back Bauer; Indians 5, Yankees 3
Bob Toth | On 08, Jul 2014
Bauer (3-4) won his first start since June 16th. After giving up three early runs, he settled in, allowing just one of the last 14 batters he faced to reach base. That runner, Jacoby Ellsbury in the fifth inning, reached on the Indians’ third error of the night and was erased on a caught stealing to end the inning.
The Indians had trailed from the fourth batter of the first inning until the bottom of the sixth. Down 3-2 against Tanaka (12-4), Lonnie Chisenhall singled to right on the first pitch of the inning. Nick Swisher, who has been marred by poor efforts at the plate for the majority of the season, quickly fell behind in the count 1-2 on a pair of swinging strikes before sending a drive over the Key Bank sign in right-center field to give the Tribe their first lead of the night, 4-3.
Swisher has now hit in four straight games and has homered in back-to-back games against his former club.
Michael Brantley, who had three RBI on the night, gave Cleveland an insurance run in the next inning with a solo homer to right-center, his 14th of the season.
The Indians found themselves in an early hole, as just like the previous night against Justin Masterson, the Yankees wasted no time jumping on the scoreboard early.
After falling behind in the count, 1-2, Brett Gardner worked a seven-pitch walk off of Bauer to start the game. Derek Jeter flied out to center, but Ellsbury singled to left center, moving Gardner up 90 feet. A Mark Teixeira squib to left fell just short of the glove of a diving Chris Dickerson in left field for a single, scoring Gardner, to give the Yankees an early 1-0 lead. After fouling off a couple of pitches, Brian McCann struck out swinging, but with both runners stealing on the play, Yan Gomes‘s throwing error allowed Ellsbury to cross the plate to give the Yankees a two run advantage.
Cleveland cut the deficit in half against AL All-Star Tanaka. New leadoff hitter Jason Kipnis singled to center and, after a fly out from Asdrubal Cabrera, stole second base with Brantley at the plate. Two pitches later, the Indians’ lone All-Star representative slapped a 2-1 pitch into the right field corner for an RBI-double to make it a 2-1 game.
New York responded with a run in the top of the second to push their cushion back to two runs. Ichiro Suzuki singled and Kelly Johnson walked on four pitches to put a runner in scoring position. A sacrifice from Zelous Wheeler moved both runners up and Gardner drove Suzuki in with a groundout to short to make it a 3-1 Yankees advantage.
The Indians missed an opportunity in the bottom of the frame. David Murphy singled to lead off the inning but was forced at second after a Gomes strikeout and a Dickerson fielder’s choice. Kipnis singled to center, moving Dickerson to third, and stole second but neither runner was able to score as Cabrera grounded out to second to end the inning.
In the fifth, Dickerson singled to center to lead off the inning and moved to second on a groundout by Kipnis to first. Another grounder to Teixeira moved Dickerson to third and, as has been the case so many times this season, Brantley drove the runner home with an aggressive base running double to left to make it a 3-2 game. With an opportunity to tie it, Carlos Santana flied out to center to end the inning.
Tanaka (12-4) was lifted in the seventh after a Santana single followed Brantley’s home run. He was charged with five earned runs on ten hits. He issued one walk and struck out five.
The five runs scored by the Indians and the ten hits collected were both the most allowed by Tanaka in his 18-game Major League career.
Bauer gave a thinner Indians bullpen seven innings after settling in, one night after another short effort from Masterson. He allowed just four hits on the night and gave up three runs, two of which were earned. He walked two and struck out six on the night.
The win for the Indians pulled the club back within one game of the .500 mark at 44-45. The Yankees fell to 45-44 on the season.
Prior to the game, the Indians placed Masterson on the 15-day disabled list and designated reliever Mark Lowe for assignment. Rookie outfielder Tyler Holt, up for two days, was optioned to Triple-A Columbus, while the club selected the contract of catcher Roberto Perez and recalled reliever Nick Hagadone from Columbus.
Josh Tomlin (5-6, 4.11) will take the mound for the Tribe on Wednesday. He will look to get back on track after a ten-hit loss his last time out against the Kansas City Royals. Brandon McCarthy (3-10, 5.01 with Arizona) will make his first start for the Yankees after being acquired in a trade with the Diamondbacks on Sunday.
First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM ET. Follow the action on Fox Sports SportsTime Ohio, the YES Network, and any of the affiliates of the Cleveland Indians Radio Network.
Photo: Jason Miller/Getty Images