Chris Seddon was better in his second start with the Indians than in his first, but the Tribe offense was unable to muster much of anything against Boston starter Clay Buchholz, who twirled a two-hit complete game gem while leading the Red Sox to a 3-2 win in Cleveland on Friday. Seddon threw a quality start himself, but was undone by a costly error and a two-run bomb of a home run by Cody Ross. The loss drops the Indians to 52-61.
The Indians staked Seddon to an early lead in the first when Asdrubal Cabrera launched a solo home run, and Seddon was able to hold onto that lead through three innings. However, in the fourth inning he issued a leadoff walk to shortstop Mike Aviles, and with light rain falling, tried to pick Ross off first base. His throw went wide of first baseman Casey Kotchman, allowing Aviles to go to third. Second baseman Dustin Pedroia would bring him in to score with an RBI single.
The score would remain that way, despite a leadoff double by Cabrera in the fourth, until the top of the sixth inning, when Seddon gave up a one-out single to Pedroia. After retiring Adrian Gonzalez on a flyout, Ross hammered his 18th home run to dead center field.
The Indians did score another run off Buchholz in the bottom of the sixth, when second baseman Jason Donald reached base on a fielding error by Pedroia, and then moved to third on a throwing error by Aviles, who was trying to salvage the play. Left fielder Ezequiel Carrera scored Donald on a sacrifice fly. But that would be all they could do against Buchholz, and Cabrera had both of the Indians’ two hits.
The Indians did get some solid relief work from rookie Cody Allen and then Esmil Rodgers, who combined for three innings of scoreless baseball. But the offense simply couldn’t do anything against Buchholz, who threw 104 pitches the entire game — 72 for strikes.
The Good: Seddon pitched a quality start, walking only two, and for the most part did a good job of limiting the damage by the Red Sox. The bullpen got good performances by someone other than the usual suspects (Chris Perez, Vinnie Pestano, Joe Smith). Carrera and Brantley each made spectacular defensive plays in the outfield.
The Bad: Sometimes a starter is just dominating, and that’s what Buchholz did against the Indians lineup. Cabrera was the only Indian to get a hit, and the offense failed to score him from a leadoff double. Carrera struck out three times.
The “Huh?”: Seddon seemed overly concerned with baserunners, leading to his crucial error in the fourth. He might be better off worrying less about the people already on base than about preventing more batters from reaching.