Cesar Hernandez pulled back on a bunt attempt on the first pitch that he saw from Alex Colome to start the bottom of the tenth. For fans opposing the use of bunt in baseball and especially in extra innings with the free runner standing at second base to open the inning, they got their wish on the next pitch as Hernandez stroked a 92 MPH fastball left right over the heart of the plate and ripped it just over the right field wall for a walk-off two-run home run, giving the Cleveland Indians a 5-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Saturday afternoon.
Hernandez’s heroics gave the Indians (24-19) a needed win less than 24 hours after a crushing loss to the Twins (16-29) in the opener of a three-game set from Progressive Field. The Tribe jumped out to an early lead, only to lose it bit by bit in the middle innings as the Twins pulled all the way back to tie the game at three while ending Shane Bieber’s start at just five and one-third innings. The bullpen picked up for the staff ace, firing four and two-thirds hitless and shutout innings in relief, while the offense finally scratched out the runs it needed to seal a win.
The Cleveland Indians ended their brief West Coast trip on the right note on Wednesday night, sneaking out of town with a 3-2 victory over Shohei Ohtani and the Los Angeles Angels.
The Tribe took a first inning lead, but the Angels got out in front after solo runs in the third and fourth innings, using three extra base hits to take the advantage from the visiting club. Cleveland responded with solo runs of their own in their next two trips to the plate in support of starter Aaron Civale and the bullpen tandem of Emmanuel Clase and James Karinchak closed the door despite allowing the tying run to reach base in their respective innings of action.
The Los Angeles Angels used three home runs to rally back from a five-run first inning deficit, but the Cleveland Indians had the last laugh as Josh Naylor’s solo blast with two outs in the top of the eighth gave the Tribe a 6-5 win on Tuesday night to end a four-game losing skid.
The Indians put up five runs in the first inning against Angels’ starter Andrew Heaney, but were unable to strike through against him after that frame or against Jaime Barria in long relief. In the meantime, the Angels slowly chipped into that first-inning hole, taking Zach Plesac deep three times to get back into the ball game.
Cleveland dropped its fourth straight after an ugly five-run second by the Los Angeles Angels pushed them to an easy 7-4 win over Sam Hentges and the Indians on Monday night.
Kicking off the second leg of their two-city West Coast trip, the Indians were tripped up after a quick start to the game had them on top by a run. The Angels tied things up quickly in the home half of the first without the aid of a hit, then knocked out Hentges in a rough second frame to coast to victory. While the club was undoubtedly excited for its series opening win, attentions were likely more focused on superstar Mike Trout, who exited the game after just one plate appearance after straining his right calf while running the bases in the first inning.
Any conversations of Zach Plesac’s demise were silenced on Thursday, as the third-year right-hander took a no-hitter into the eighth inning and the Cleveland bullpen held off late threats by Seattle as the Indians knocked off the Mariners, 4-2, from T-Mobile Park.
A dominant start from Plesac spoiled a pair of Major League debuts for two top Mariners prospects, Jarred Kelenic and Logan Gilbert. The outfielder Kelenic went 0-for-4 against Plesac, while the Tribe lineup did some early damage to the young left-hander Gilbert, who was tagged for all four runs in a short four-inning outing.
The Cleveland bats made up for lost time on Saturday as the Indians routed the Cincinnati Reds, 9-2, from Progressive Field.
After suffering through nine innings without a hit in the series opener with the Reds on Friday night, the Tribe bats came out swinging in the first and never slowed down to even up the three-game set between the two clubs at a game each. The offensive outburst backed yet another strong start from Aaron Civale, who remained perfect on the year with seven quality innings on the mound.
Cleveland ended its road trip in dominating fashion, as Triston McKenzie bounced back from a career-worst performance to fire five shutout innings of two-hit baseball before letting his bullpen handle the rest as the Indians blanked the Kansas City Royals by a 4-0 final on Thursday afternoon.
The Indians won six of seven games during their road trip over the last week, taking two of three from the Chicago White Sox before sweeping the Royals in a four-game series in KC for the first time ever. The stretch of improved play on the field for the Tribe moved the team right back into the mix in the American League Central Division, as the 17-13 club has moved from third place to the top of the pack over the course of the last week.
For the second day in a row, the Cleveland Indians overcame a big early deficit to steal away a victory from the Kansas City Royals. This time, it required a four-run rally in the eighth inning as the Tribe rolled over the Royals, 7-3.
The end results for Cleveland erased some of the drama that occurred during the game, when a suspect umpire ruling gave the Royals extra outs in the third inning and forced pitcher Sam Hentges to throw many additional pitches to get out of the frame, leading to some extra wear and tear on the team’s bullpen. At the end of the day, the Tribe rallied back to earn at least a series split with the Royals in their four-game set from Kauffman Stadium while pulling within a game of matching the Royals in the American League Central standings.
A pair of clutch two-out home runs in the top of the seventh put the Indians on top and the Cleveland bullpen prevented the Kansas City lineup from coming all the way back in an 8-6 victory over the Royals on Monday from Kauffman Stadium.
In game one of a four-game set from Kansas City, Missouri, fans were treated to a lot of offense in an early season matchup with a lot on the line for both clubs, as the first place Royals wanted to use this week to put some extra distance between themselves and the third place Tribe. While the Royals used a long ball of their own to take the lead in the fourth inning, the Indians rallied back with a five-run frame in the seventh, then held on the rest of the way as the Royals tried to chip back into the contest against the tough Cleveland bullpen.
Ramirez powered the offense with a bases loaded two-run single in the third to put the Indians on top for good, then added a key insurance run late as Cleveland got back to the .500 mark at 12-12 on the season. His efforts provided support to Bieber, who lasted six innings while establishing some new Major League records along the way.
The Cleveland bats took advantage of the slumping Minnesota Twins pitching staff on Tuesday night as the Indians claimed a series win with some extra base magic in a 7-4 victory.
Franmil Reyes put on an impressive display of hitting and power to lead the Tribe to a third straight victory, fresh on the heels of a season-high four-game losing skid. He posted three hits, including a pair of majestic home runs, with the first blast tying the game in the second and the latter giving the club the lead in the bottom of the sixth against Minnesota starter Kenta Maeda. The Cleveland lineup used seven extra base hits to back starter Aaron Civale, who lasted seven and two-thirds innings despite giving up four runs on the night.
Jose Ramirez tied the game with a solo homer in the eighth and Jordan Luplow walked it off in the bottom of the tenth as his two-run home run to start the inning gave the Cleveland Indians a big 5-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Monday night.
The struggling Cleveland offense stepped up in the nick of time in the series opener between the Indians and Twins on Monday, getting Zach Plesac off of the hook after seven and two-thirds quality innings on the mound in an encouraging bounce-back effort from the young right-hander. He saved the Tribe’s bullpen and kept the game close long enough for his offensive teammates to do some late damage against the Twins bullpen, riding a pair of big flies late to steal away a needed win.