Indians finally beat Tigers, 8-2
Published 1:38 am Thursday, June 25, 2015
CLEVELAND (AP) — Carlos Carrasco kept the AL’s best hitting team in check for eight innings and the Cleveland Indians won their first home game against Detroit this season, beating the Tigers — without slugger Miguel Cabrera in the lineup — 8-2 on Wednesday.
Carrasco (9-6) carried a two-hit shutout into the seventh before giving up a two-run homer to J.D. Martinez. The right-hander allowed five hits and struck out seven.
The Indians came in 0-5 against the four-time defending AL Central champions in Cleveland this season and were just 5-20 at Progressive Field versus the Tigers since the start of 2013.
Cleveland’s Jason Kipnis, the league’s leading hitter, extended his hitting streak to 19 games, and rookie Francisco Lindor hit his first career homer off Buck Farmer (0-2) to help the Indians salvage the series finale.
The Indians caught a break before the game even began as the Tigers rested Cabrera, who has destroyed Cleveland pitching with a .619 average (26 of 42) this season. Manager Brad Ausmus wanted to give his superstar a day to relax.
“Even Superman needs a day off,” Ausmus said of Cabrera, hitting an absurd .682 (15 for 22) in Cleveland this year.
“People say, ‘How can you give Miggy a day off? But if you get through 162 games and he doesn’t have a day off, they’ll also say, ‘How can you not give him a day off?”’
Without Cabrera in the middle of their lineup, the Tigers were missing their biggest bat and they never got going against Carrasco, who came in with a 6.93 ERA against Detroit.
Farmer was called up from Triple-A Toledo to start for Detroit in place of Justin Verlander, who was scratched with a stiff back. Farmer allowed five runs and eight hits in 5 1-3 innings.
After playing from behind against the Tigers all season, the Indians took a 3-0 lead in the third on Michael Brantley’s RBI single and Carlos Santana’s two-out, two-run double.
Farmer struck out five straight Cleveland hitters before Kipnis singled with one out in the third to extend his hitting streak at home to 28 straight games — the longest at home for an Indians player since Miguel Dilone in 1980.
Lindor reached on a broken-bat single before Brantley pulled a single to right. David Murphy singled and Santana followed with a shot to the gap in right-center, just his fourth hit in 27 at-bats during the eight-game homestand.
Lindor, who has shown he’s major league-ready defensively, connected for his first homer with one out in the fifth to make it 4-0.
Tigers: At this point, Detroit isn’t overly concerned about Verlander’s back, which tightened up on him during a start last weekend in New York. The 2011 AL MVP and Cy Young Award winner has made two starts this season since coming off the disabled list because of a triceps injury.
Indians: C Yan Gomes drove in two runs after missing three straight games with a stiff neck. He was itching to return, sending a text message to his manager at 1:30 a.m. “He declared himself ready to play,” Terry Francona said. “He said, ‘I’ve got to play.”’
Tigers: Alfredo Simon (7-4) starts as Detroit returns home to begin a four-game series — and nine-game homestand — against the White Sox, who will send LHP Carlos Rodon (3-1) to the mound.
Indians: Following an off day, Corey Kluber, who has received two or fewer runs of support in 11 of 15 starts, opens a three-game series in Baltimore against lefty Wei-Yin Chen.