In a game which is on pace to last four hours, the Indians jumped out to a quick lead, Boston came right back to tie it, and the Tribe immediately took the lead again, Mitch Talbot pitched out of serious third-inning trouble, and it all translates to a 3-2 Cleveland lead going to the fourth.
After Talbot pitched around a single and struck out the side in the first, Michael Brantley led off the home half with a hit and, with one out, Shin-Soo Choo drilled a homer to right-center to give Cleveland an instant lead.
In the Boston second, after one was out, two singles and a walk loaded the bases for Marco Scutaro, who plated the first Sox’ run with an infield hit. The next batter, Jacoby Ellsbury, grounded to first and another run scored, tying the affair at 2-2.
Cleveland came right back in the bottom of the second. Matt LaPorta singled and with one out, Brantley walked. Asdrubal Cabrera then laced an RBI single to put the Tribe back on top. With two on and one out, though, Choo grounded into an inning-ending double play.
In the top of the third, Dustin Pedroia was hit by a pitch and Adrian Gonzalez doubled, but then Talbot got tough, striking out Kevin Youkilis, getting David Ortiz on a liner to short and fanning J.D. Drew to end the major threat.
Talbot has thrown 72 pitches through three innings, so it is obvious that the bullpen will be in this one early. Let’s hope Talbot can get through the fifth with a lead, and thus be in line for the win. That job in the third makes him worthy of a W, at this point.