Indians 11, Pirates 7
Pirates Attack First
Following a quiet first inning, the Pirates ended up on the scoreboard first following a two-run home run by third baseman Phillip Evans. The home run came off of Mike Clevinger following a single by designated hitter Colin Moran. Clevinger was able to escape damage after that as he got the next three batters out consecutively.
After a shaky second inning, Clevinger settled down and didn’t allow the Pirates to score again until the top of the fifth inning. Once again it was the home run ball that caused damage, as Pirates outfielder Guillermo Heredia hit one to right-center field. He completed the fifth inning before being pulled out of the game and replaced by closer Brad Hand.
Hand pitched the sixth inning in a classic Terry Francona move. The Indians then used four other relievers to close out the game. Combined, the Indians bullpen recorded four earned runs, three walks, and six strikeouts. Pittsburgh struck with two more long balls before the night was over though. One came in the sixth inning as first baseman Josh Bell took Hand deep with a solo home run. The other happened in the top of the eighth inning as Colin Moran went yard off of Adam Cimber.
In total, the Pirates lineup recorded eleven hits, six RBI, four walks, and eleven strikeouts over 37 at bats. Pittsburgh left eight men on base and went 4-for-13 with runners in scoring position (RISP).
Indians Bats Come Out
For Cleveland, Cesar Hernandez tried to get the scoring going in the top of the first against Trevor Williams. Williams ended up escaping the first inning without allowing a run and continued cruising until a Bradley Zimmer double in the bottom of the third. Zimmer’s double to left field ended up, oddly, being fan interference. (Editor’s Note: An Indians field worker hopped onto the field and touched the ball while it was still live.) Following that, the aforementioned Hernandez hit a hard line out to right field before Pittsburgh made a pitching change.
Chris Stratton came in and gave up a single to third baseman Jose Ramirez and a double to shortstop Francisco Lindor, allowing Cleveland to score two runs. Cleveland scored another run in the fourth inning. The main action came in the fifth inning, though, when Lindor slugged a three-run home run on a line drive to right field off Richard Rodriguez. Later that inning, outfielder Jordan Luplow made noise with a solo home run to left.
Pittsburgh used three other relievers in the game. Cleveland scored four additional runs off of the Pirates bullpen. In total, Pirates relievers combined for 10 earned runs, two walks, and seven strikeouts.
Over 38 at-bats, Cleveland hitters recorded 15 hits, 11 RBI, two walks, and eight strikeouts. Cleveland left five men on base and went 4-for-13 with RISP.
Both Cleveland and Pittsburgh square off in the final game of the exhibition series on Wednesday. First pitch occurs at 6:05 Eastern. Right-hander Aaron Civale gets the nod for Cleveland, while left-hander Derek Holland will start for the Pirates.
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