In a well pitched game for both clubs until the ninth inning, a three-run rally by the Indians to tie the game was squandered as Bryan Shaw gave up a walk-off single to Yunel Escobar in the bottom half as the Los Angeles Angels defeated the Cleveland Indians by a 4-3 final on Saturday night.
Shaw took over on the mound after eight solid innings from Trevor Bauer, who kept the Indians close throughout the night. The offense, however, could not figure out Matt Shoemaker, but erupted for three off of Angels closer Huston Street to tie the game.
The Indians setup man struggled with his command right out of the bullpen gates, giving up a leadoff single to Brendan Ryan. Jett Bandy dropped down a sacrifice, and instead of taking the risk of throwing out the lead runner at second base, Shaw went to first for the easier out. Gregorio Petit walked on five pitches to set up some double play possibilities, but Escobar splintered his bat on a low 2-2 pitch with a bloop into center in front of Tyler Naquin. Ryan scored from second base with the winning run.
Cleveland staged their massive comeback in the top of the ninth against Street, who entered with impressive numbers in his career against the Indians and a 3-0 lead. After Jason Kipnis popped out to short for the first out, Jose Ramirez singled to the gap in left-center. Mike Napoli worked a deep at bat before singling to center. Carlos Santana singled to right, scoring Ramirez to give the Indians their first run of the night. Lonnie Chisenhall lifted a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Napoli to make it a 3-2 game. Francisco Lindor, pinch-hitting for Juan Uribe, worked an eight-pitch walk, setting the stage for rookie Naquin, who once again delivered with clutch timely hitting with a single to right, scoring Santana on a head-first dive into the plate to tie the game at three.
Fernando Salas relieved and got catcher Yan Gomes to pop up in the infield to end the threat on just one pitch.
The story for the first six innings of the game was the quality pitching matchup between Bauer and Shoemaker. The Indians managed just three base runners through the first two-thirds of the game against the Los Angeles starter, getting a one-out double from Santana in the second, a two-base error by Escobar with Rajai Davis at the plate and two outs in the third, and a leadoff single and a stolen base by Ramirez in the fourth.
Bauer had allowed just two hits to the Halos until the bottom of the fourth, when they struck through for an error-aided run. With one out, Mike Trout singled to right. Chisenhall did not field it cleanly and it kicked towards the side wall, allowing the Angels star to move to second base. After Albert Pujols flied to right for the second out, Jefry Marte doubled to the corner in left, scoring Trout and giving the Angels a 1-0 lead.
The Tribe starter was still on the mound in the seventh when the Angels expanded their lead to three. With one down, Johnny Giavotella singled to center and went to third on a single by Bandy. Petit grounded back to Bauer, who looked the runner at third back before retiring Petit at first. Escobar walked to load the bases and Kole Calhoun singled to left, scoring both Giavotella and Bandy to set the score at 3-0.
The Indians rally in the ninth off of Street tied it, but it would not stand as Shaw could not control the bottom of the Angels lineup.
The loss ends the Indians brief two-game win streak and drops them to 34-27 on the season. Their lead in the AL Central falls to three games after wins by both Kansas City and Detroit earlier in the day Saturday. The Angels (27-36) end their five-game losing streak with the much needed win. They have won just four times in their last 15 games.
BAUER PROVING HE BELONGS
Bauer gave the Indians eight innings of quality work on the mound in the no-decision Saturday. He pitched with traffic throughout the game, but was aided by a pair of double plays by the defense behind him.
He allowed three runs (two earned) on nine hits with a walk and three strikeouts. He needed just 106 pitches (70 strikes) to complete his outing and was spared his third loss of the season by the late rally from his offense.
SHOEMAKER STIFLES TRIBE
Shoemaker earned a tough no-decision of his own after completely controlling the Indians offense for eight straight innings. He did not allow a run, gave up three hits, walked his first batter in his last five starts, and struck out eleven. He handed the ball to his bullpen for the ninth after throwing 108 pitches, including 74 for strikes.
It was the third time in his last five starts that he has struck out eleven batters or more in an outing. Shoemaker’s walk of Santana on four pitches in the seventh inning ended a ridiculous streak of 49 consecutive strikeouts without a walk.
He entered the game 1-0 against the Indians in two career starts, posting a 1.29 ERA and 0.93 WHIP.
Street took the blown save and allowed the Indians back into the game with his rough outing in the ninth. He retired just two of the seven batters he faced, giving up three runs on four hits while walking one.
He entered the game with solid numbers lifetime against the Tribe. In his previous 18 career outings against Cleveland, he was 1-0 with ten saves, a 0.90 ERA, and a 0.75 WHIP.
SHAW STRUGGLES AS WELL
Shaw (0-2, 5.18) took his second loss of the season and spent his time pitching from behind. Three of the four batters he faced took a first pitch ball. He allowed two hits in the inning, walked a batter, and gave up the winning run on the exploded bat single by Escobar.
Shaw has now allowed runs in each of his last two outings.
Salas (3-2, 3.45) needed just one pitch to earn the win, getting Gomes to pop out to end the top half of the ninth.
NAQUIN THE TEMPORARY HERO
Entering his at bat in the ninth with an 0-for-3 effort at the plate and a pair of strikeouts against Shoemaker, Naquin seemed to like his matchup against Street better. His huge single to right tied the game and was just the second hit in nine at bats for the Indians on the night with runners in scoring position. When Gomes popped out to end the inning, he pushed it to a 2-for-10 mark for the game.
DAY OF REST FOR LINDOR
Shortstop Lindor did not start the game, looking for a well-deserved night off. Instead, he entered as a pinch-hitter in the ninth for Uribe, who extended his long hitting slump with a 0-for-3 at the plate. Lindor walked to keep the inning alive for Naquin.
Former first round pick and friend of the feather David Huff (0-1, 12.27) will take the mound on Sunday for the Angels. The left-hander allowed five runs on eight hits in his first start of the season, a loss to the New York Yankees on Tuesday. The Indians will counter with right-hander Danny Salazar (6-3, 2.24), who will make his first start since June 3 after having his spot in the rotation skipped while dealing with right shoulder fatigue.
First pitch of the series finale from Anaheim is scheduled for a 3:35 PM ET start.
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