Saturday night’s game against the Rangers was hardly the offensive show that the series opener was, but the Indians still managed a 2-0 victory against Texas. Tribe lefty T.J. House pitched well, giving up just three hits and two walks while striking out seven, but only lasted five innings. Cleveland’s bullpen pitched four scoreless innings of relief, allowing two hits and a walk for the remainder of the game. For Texas, right-handed starter Miles Mikolas threw seven strong innings, but ended up with the loss. He gave up two runs on five hits and two walks, and struck out six.
Top of the 6th, tied 0-0
After five solid innings, House’s pitch count was climbing, and he was nearing the end of his outing. The left-hander walked Elvis Andrus to lead off the inning, then gave up a single to Alex Rios. With runners at first and second, House was replaced by Scott Atchison. Atchison got a ground out, a fielder’s choice and a strikeout to end the inning and keep the Rangers from scoring.
Bottom of the 6th, tied 0-0
In the bottom of the inning, the Tribe took advantage of Atchison’s escape act. Jason Kipnis singled to lead off, and he advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Mike Aviles and a ground out off the bat of Michael Brantley. With two down, the Rangers elected to intentionally walk Carlos Santana to get to Lonnie Chisenhall. Chisenhall responded with an RBI single to center field, giving the Tribe the only run they would need to secure the win. Nick Swisher followed with an RBI single of his own, making it 2-0 in favor of the Indians.
House pitched extremely well, despite having a shortened outing. He worked around defensive miscues that could have cost the team runs, but instead only gave the Rangers more stranded runners. The bullpen did a phenomenal job as well, with Atchison, Nick Hagadone, Bryan Shaw and Cody Allen combining to pitch four scoreless innings.
Kipnis made two defensive misplays, one of which counted as an error, and House was charged with a throwing error, as well. Jose Ramirez and Roberto Perez continued to struggle at the plate, going hitless in Saturday’s game and combining for three strikeouts between the two of them.
Check It Out
– As a team, the Tribe has the most errors in baseball, with 82 – five more than any other team. They also have the worst fielding percentage, at .980.
– The Indians will face Rangers’ ace Yu Darvish on Sunday. Darvish has the 8th-highest WAR amongst AL pitchers, at 3.6. He also has the 9th-best ERA, at just 2.90.