Player of the Game
Michael Brantley owned this game tonight with two home runs and a sacrifice fly to knock in more runs alone than the Royals were able to score as a team. Both home runs were solo shots, but no doubters and they doubled his total on the season. His final POG score was 7.70.
The defensive player of the game tonight would go to Mark Reynolds who made two fantastic diving plays, one that was caught on the fly and the other completed by throwing to second. By my count, the Indians have had 19 great plays this year, three amazing and 71 above average plays. After tonight, Reynolds now has made 12 of those remarkable plays this year. For those wondering, Nick Swisher currently leads all Indians with 15 plays of note with Asdrubal Cabrera coming in second with thirteen. Reynolds is tied for third.
The Indians had another late inning come back in them tonight with a Michael Brantley solo home run in the fifth and a huge sixth inning to take the lead. In the sixth, the first five hitters reached base with the first three scoring. Mike Aviles and Carlos Santana came through with RBI hits and Michael Brantley ended the scoring with a sacrifice fly. Michael Bourn and Aviles combined to add another in the seventh with another sacrifice fly after Bourn doubled and stole third. This gave the Indians a three run lead after they had been trailing prior to the sixth inning.
The defensive loser of the game was Carlos Santana who allowed three steals after allowing two wild pitches (which could easily have been called passed balls) last night. Eric Hosmer was able to steal two of the bases tonight and he is not exactly a reknowned speed demon. Yan Gomes is a pretty good all around catcher and Santana may be at risk of losing his starting position if he can't step his game up.
Ryan Raburn had a pinch hit appearance tonight, coming in for Jason Giambi when Kansas City brought in Tim Collins. The bases were loaded with one out and Raburn took four straight pitches to strike out looking. There can't have been many people to pinch hit for Giambi in his career and I certainly don't think Terry Francona brought Raburn in to sit with the bat on his shoulder. Striking out looking was essentially the worst possible thing he could have done in a situation where putting the ball in play would almost guarantee an RBI.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 6 – Kansas City Royals 2