Thanks to a late outburst in the nightcap of a day-night doubleheader yesterday, Cleveland will be going for a four-game sweep of Minnesota when Fausto Carmona takes the hill to face Liam Hendriks.
After Zach Putnam picked up his first major league win in the opener thanks to a six-run outburst in the sixth inning that led to an 8-2 win, the Indians came from behind in a big way in the second game, trailing 6-0 going to the bottom of the sixth before scoring five runs, then adding two in the seventh to take the lead en route to a 7-6 win that improved the Tribe to 80-78 on the year.
Nick Hagadone also got his first big league win in the nightcap, making it a special day for the young among the Tribe pitchers. Chris Perez picked up his 36th save as well last night.
Oddly enough, in 18 innings of baseball yesterday and with a lot of runs scored, there were no home runs from either side.
In the opener, with the score tied 2-2 going to the bottom of the sixth, Shelley Duncan drove in his third run of the game with a sac fly to get things rolling. Matt LaPorta plated a run with a double, and Jack Hannahan and Kosuke Fukudome added RBI singles, making it 6-2. Jason Kipnis put the exclamation point on the inning, driving in two more with a base hit, and closing the scoring.
In the nightcap, after The Good Guys fell behind 6-0, it would have been easy to just fold up the tent and take the loss, but in the sixth, there was Duncan again, driving in the first run with a single. Lonnie Chisenhall doubled to make it 6-2 before Lou Marson got in on the fun with a run-scoring base hit. Cord Phelps’s ground out made it 6-4, and Ezequiel Carrera’s single made it 6-5.
Finally, in the bottom of the seventh, Duncan struck again, driving in the tying and go-ahead runs with a double, and giving the Indians all they would need to send Minnesota to their 98th loss of the season.
Duncan contributed six RBIs on the day.
And now we come to the end of the home season with the Tribe on a nice little winning streak and closing in on clinching second place in the Central. It isn’t over yet, as Cleveland’s "magic number" is 2 to guarantee finishing ahead of Chicago.
After this afternoon’s contest the Indians will head to Detroit for three games with the Tigers to truly close the season.