Murphy Walkoff Caps House Money Effort; Indians 2, White Sox 1

The game was a mirror image from either side of the dugout.

Despite both teams being held to little offense by southpaws, T.J. House and Chris Sale, it was the Indians that made the most of their 10th inning opportunity and won 2-1 in extra innings. Yan Gomes tripled to start the inning and pinch-runner Chris Dickerson scored on pinch-hitter David Murphy’s single to center field with one out.

The game never would have reached extra innings without the effort of House. The rookie left-hander matched Sale for seven innings, keeping the White Sox offense stymied. The soft-tosser was just as effective with his change of pace as Sale was with his unorthodox delivery and fastball.

The Indians jumped on Sale in the bottom of the first inning. Tyler Holt started the frame with a single, but was erased when Jose Ramirez hit into a double play. Michael Brantley singled to left field, then stole second base and advanced to third on a wild throw by White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers. Carlos Santana singled to left center field to bring Brantley home and give the Indians a 1-0 lead. Cleveland tallied three hits in the inning, but would only muster two more against Sale in the contest.

Chicago answered back to tie the game in the top of the third inning when Alexei Ramirez homered off House to tie the game at one. Ramirez golfed a pitch low in the zone off House into the bleachers for his 14th home run of the season and knotting the game at 1-1.

Then, the hard-throwing Sale and the soft-tossing House matched each other pitch-for-pitch. Sale allowed just five hits and a walk over six innings, while House allowed seven hits and no walks over seven innings. Despite Sale’s fastball, he struck out only five to House’s seven. House used his curveball and worked low and inside in the strike zone to keep White Sox hitters tied up all evening.

Daniel Webb pitched the seventh for Chicago, followed by Javy Guerra in the eighth and Maikel Cleto (0-1) in the ninth to keep the game scoreless and force extra innings. Bryan Shaw pitched the eighth inning for Cleveland and Cody Allen worked around a double to Michael Taylor in the ninth to keep the game deadlocked.

In the 10th inning, Chicago had a golden opportunity to break the deadlock. Adam Eaton reached via a flawless drag bunt to start the inning. After Leury Garcia sacrificed him to second base and Jose Abreu was intentionally walked, C.C. Lee (1-1) was called upon. Lee walked Avisail Garcia to load the bases with one out before getting Dayan Viciedo to foul out and Marcus Semien to ground to second base to end the inning.

Cleveland secured the victory in the bottom of the 10th, making the most of their opportunity. Gomes tripled off the wall in left field to start the inning. Michael Bourn and Chisenhall were walked intentionally before Eric Surkamp struck out Jason Kipnis. Kipnis worked the count to 3-1 before swinging at two pitches that were out of the zone. Then, Murphy singled to center field to give the Indians a 2-1 win.

Gomes base hit in the 10th inning was the team’s first since Zach Walters’ single in the fifth inning. Cleveland only logged seven hits, the two in the 10th were enough to give the Tribe the win in extra innings. Chicago registered nine hits, but could not take advantage of their opportunity to take the lead in the top half of the 10th inning.

Cleveland’s win keeps them six games behind Kansas City in the Central Division. The Tribe will gain a game on the final Wild Card spot if Detroit loses Friday evening. Currently the Tigers are trailing 6-0 and are in a rain delay.

Saturday, the Indians will look to take control and win the series with Chicago. Corey Kluber (13-9, 2.58) will look to rebound from three straight losses. He’ll be opposed by Jose Quintana (7-10, 3.44) of the White Sox.

Photo: Mark Duncan/AP Photo

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