Player of the Game
Carlos Santana was right in the middle of all the Indians scoring tonight, starting in the first with an RBI single to knock in Jason Kipnis and give the Indians an early (and short lived) 1-0 lead. He doubled in another two runs in the seventh, then singled in the ninth to go 3/4 with 3 RBI. While it was his bad play that started things off poorly for the Indians, he ended up helping the team far more than he hurt.
After the Yankees staked a 10-1 lead, the Indians offense finally was able to start something up. Roberto Perez, Jason Kipnis and Mike Aviles all reached safely to start the seventh to load the bases for Michael Brantley. Brantley walked for an RBI, then Carlos Santana brought home two more with a double. Brantley then scored on the first out of the inning, a David Murphy sacrifice fly. Nick Swisher and Chris Dickerson ended the rally with two quick outs, but the four run inning got the Tribe back within four.
The ‘Feathers Down’ section could probably be renamed, “Indians Defensive Miscues” as there is a new one every night. Tonight, it was Carlos Santana for the second night in a row, starting the game off by dropping a Jose Ramirez throw to get Derek Jeter for the second out of the game. After he was safe on the incorectly called single, Trevor Bauer lost his command and walked three with a single in the middle. With three already in, Martin Prado hit a ground ball up the middle that Jason Kipnis tossed over Ramirez’s head. Two more scored on the play which, with another confusing scoring decision, was called a single and an error. The Yankees left the inning with a 5-1 lead and despite the fact that all the runs should have been unearned after the Santana drop, they were all earned in the end.
Vinnie Pestano was traded earlier in the week as the Indians had too much relief depth to make use of him, but a glaring hole made itself obvious again tonight. John Axford retired the final batter without issue in the fifth, but the sixth was a whole different inning. Axford walked Ichiro Suzuki and Brett Gardner, then intentionally walked Jacoby Ellsbury after a sacrifice bunt. Instead of switching to the left handed Marc Rzepczynski to face Carlos Beltran, Terry Francona stuck with Axford, who finally threw a strike down the middle of the plate, good for a grand slam and an eight run Yankee lead. Rzepczynski wasn’t much better, giving up a double to his first batter, Francisco Cervelli, who later scored on a Jose Ramirez error.
Final Score: Cleveland Indians 6 – New York Yankees 10
On Deck: The Indians have an early start time in New York on Saturday as they will be featured on Fox Sports One. Corey Kluber and Brandon McCarthy will start things off at 12:35 PM in the Bronx.