Shin-Soo Choo blasted a game-winning three-run homer to the bleachers in left in the bottom of the ninth inning this afternoon, as the Indians came from behind to beat the Seattle Mariners in the first game of a day/night doubleheader, 7-5.
The homer made a winner of Chris Perez, who relieved Justin Masterson in the top of the ninth and allowed the tying and go-ahead runs to score.
But in the bottom half, Ezequiel Carrera doubled leading off, and the Mariners botched a fielder’s choice grounder off the bat of Asdrubal Cabrera, with the error on second-baseman Dustin Ackley putting runners on the corners with nobody out.
Choo then took away any nervousness about how the inning would play out when he went deep on the first pitch.
Masterson gutted his way through 8.1 innings, allowing 10 hits and five runs, two of which, of course, were inherited runners that Chris Perez let score. But all was well that ended well, and on a day when the earth literally moved (I sure felt it here in Pennsylvania), maybe Choo’s walkoff will give the Indians just the “shake-up” they needed to get back into this pennant race in the AL Central.
Carrera and Kosuke Fukudome had three hits for the Tribe, while Choo and Lonnie Chisenhall both delivered two.
Now Cleveland needs to come back tonight at 7:05 and try to win again. If they do they will gain at least a half-game on the Detroit Tigers. And should the Tigers lose tonight in Tampa Bay, the Tribe can climb back to within four games of Detroit.