Player of the Game
Although their were many contributors, there can be only one Player of the Game and tonight, it was Michael Bourn. Bourn hit a solo home run to tie the game in the third, walked and scored in the eighth and had a great outfield assist to nab Brett Butler at third base. His final POG score was 4.37 with both Jason Kipnis and Michael Brantley also finishing with scores above 3.00 and Lonnie Chisenhall, Nick Swisher and T.J. House all above 2.00.
Everyone got into the offensive action as the Indians were able to remove former Tribesman Jeremy Guthrie from tonight’s game in the fifth inning. The Tribe put three on the board in both the third and the fifth. In the third, Michael Bourn lead things off with a solo home run, then the Indians added two more on hits by Michael Brantley, Jason Kipnis and Lonnie Chisenhall.
Milestone Alert: Carlos Santana had two hits tonight, including a single to right in the fifth for his 500th career hit. He becomes just the 92nd Indians batter to hit safely 500 times with the team and one of three on the current roster along with Asdrubal Cabrera and Michael Brantley.
The Indians added on in the fifth with another onslaught of hits. Santana and Kipnis lead off the inning with hits before Chisenhall walked. Nick Swisher then came through with a two run single, just his second RBI hit in his last 13 games. David Murphy brought home one more with a single giving every Indian except George Kottaras a hit through the first five innings. In addition, the Indians three through six hitters all had two hits in their first three at bats while the five through eight hitters all knocked in at least one run.
The Indians’ defense was fantastic tonight, making not only the routine (no errors), but the exceptional. T.J. House fielded his position well while both Murphy and Kipnis made impressive diving plays. Chisenhall looked good at third, as did Santana at first creating a much safer situation for the Indians than the opposite did earlier in the year. The most impressive play of the night had to have been the Murphy dive as Bryan Shaw got Lorenzo Cain to fly out to right on the first pitch he threw in relief of House.
House was good enough to grab his first career win, but he definitely left something to be desired. House gave up nine hits, although only two went for extra bases, his first and last hits allowed in the game. After allowing one run through five innings, he gave up single runs in both the sixth and seventh before being pulled with two outs in that inning. House did a great job throwing strikes and didn’t walk anyone, but generally had too much of the plate on his pitches, leading to the outpouring of Royals singles.
The Indians added an insurance run in the eighth inning, but it may have cost the Indians more than they would like. Bourn hurt his leg running around third base prior to scoring on the play and did not go out into the field for the bottom of the inning. On a more psychological level, Cody Allen had one of his worst appearances since being named closer, loading the bases with none out before striking out Lorenzo Cain and getting Eric Hosmer to ground into a double play.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 7 – Kansas City Royals 3
On Deck: The Indians and Royals will find out the winner of this series tomorrow, at 1:05 PM in Cleveland.