Josh Tomlin was impressive in his return to the major leagues, allowing just one run in 6 2/3 innings during Tuesday’s win against Minnesota. The offense did their part as well, staking him to an early 4-0 lead against Twins starter Sam Deduno. Tomlin, who walked one and struck out four, gave up a solo home run to Twins first baseman Chris Colabello in the seventh inning, but otherwise was able to silence Minnesota’s bats. The Tribe’s bullpen was able to make the lead stand up, despite some defensive miscues that allowed another run to score in the ninth against fill-in closer Bryan Shaw. Tomlin walked away with his first win since July 5, 2012.
Bottom of the 1st, Tied 0-0
Nick Swisher lined a double to right, and Michael Brantley followed with an RBI single to put the Indians on top after just three batters. Later in the inning, an error by Colabello allowed Brantley to score on what would have been the third out in the inning.
Bottom of the 2nd, Indians Up 2-0
Lonnie Chisenhalll singled to lead off the inning, and a balk by Deduno, combined with a double to center by Yan Gomes, sent him around to score. A few batters later, Swisher padded the lead with an RBI line drive to center of his own.
Tomlin looked completely in control throughout the game, and threw over 70 percent of his pitches for strikes. He was extremely effective, giving up just four hits. The Indians’ offense also made a rare appearance, including key hits from Swisher. Although they only had six hits, they made them count, and they took advantage of the Twins’ lone error. The bullpen was also solid, despite John Axford and Cody Allen both having the night off.
The Tribe’s defense continues to struggle. Asdrubal Cabrera misplayed what should have been the final out of the game, resulting in an error that cost the team a run and brought the tying run to the plate. Shaw worked out of it without blowing the save, but the Tribe’s pitching staff has had to get far too many extra outs this season. Earlier in the game, two Twins batters reached on strikeouts, including once on a throwing error by Gomes. That’s two batters too many.
Check It Out
- Before giving up the home run to Colabello, Tomlin had pitched 26 straight scoreless innings in Columbus and Cleveland.
- Tuesday’s game was also Deduno’s first start of the season, although he had made seven appearances out of the bullpen this year. He had not started a game since last August, when he had season-ending shoulder surgery.
- As of Tuesday, Tribe pitchers led the American League with 295 strikeouts. The Twins’ staff had the fewest in MLB, with just 176.