Indians 4, Athletics 1
Brian Fuentes insists he wasn’t running out of gas when
Athletics manager Bob Geren summoned him from the bullpen for a
third straight day.
But after retiring only one batter and giving up three runs to
the winningest team in baseball, Fuentes might need a break.
Orlando Cabrera hit a tiebreaking RBI single in the ninth in his
lone at-bat, Fausto Carmona won for the third time in four starts
and the Cleveland Indians beat Oakland 4-1 on Tuesday night for
their seventh straight victory.
”I was a little tired but that’s just the way the game goes,”
Fuentes said. ”Sometimes I might sit for a while but if the phone
rings, I’m going to get up. They put the ball in play. It wasn’t
like I walked everybody around.”
Fuentes is serving as the A’s closer while two-time All-Star
Andrew Bailey is on the disabled list with a strained right
forearm. Bailey, the 2009 AL Rookie of the Year, is set to throw to
hitters before Wednesday’s game. Bailey hasn’t pitched this season
because of a strained right forearm.
If all goes well, Bailey might throw again to hitters or
progress straight to a simulated game. In the meantime, the A’s
will continue using Fuentes.
”Pushed him a little bit, but he’s set up right there,”
Oakland manager Bob Geren said. ”Tie game with your closer in …
it would have been the perfect scenario if he would have just
pitched the way he had been. He knows his body. He knows when he
can go and when he can’t. Tonight he very easily could have had a
1-2-3 inning. It just didn’t happen.”
Matt LaPorta and Jack Hannahan hit back-to-back one-out singles
off Fuentes (1-3) in the ninth before Cabrera delivered against his
former club. Asdrubal Cabrera then provided a two-run single as
LaPorta hit a tying RBI single in the seventh and the Indians
produced another impressive win on a day that provided plenty of
potential distraction for the AL Central leaders.
”We couldn’t create anything,” Orlando Cabrera said. ”We got
that break (against Fuentes) and we attacked.”
Before the game, outfielder Shin-Soo Choo apologized to each of
his teammates individually in the clubhouse for his Monday arrest
on suspicion of drunken driving and any embarrassment it
After that, Choo pulled the Indians into a tight huddle near the
dugout before pregame warmups and batting practice. He started in
right field and batted third, going 0 for 4 with a walk. Choo was
booed by the small announced crowd of 10,135.
Carmona (3-3), a 13-game winner and first-time All-Star last
year, gave up only Kurt Suzuki’s RBI groundout in the fourth. He
allowed five hits and one run, struck out five and walked one in
eight strong innings – an efficient 96-pitch performance.
Chris Perez pitched a perfect ninth for his eighth save in nine
tries and second in two games.
The Indians kicked off a six-game California road trip against
the AL West by continuing the momentum they gained during a 6-0
homestand that gave them a 13-game winning streak at Progressive
Cleveland is just 7-6 away from home and has lost nine of its
last 10 series at the Coliseum. Winning the opener of this series
is a good start considering the Indians dropped two of three in
Oakland last year and were outscored 22-6 – with shutouts of 10-0
Tyson Ross is still looking for his first win since joining the
A’s rotation as a fill-in for the injured Dallas Braden.
Ross was rolling until allowing three singles in the seventh,
including LaPorta’s tying base hit. Still, Ross has a 0.68 ERA in
his last two starts, lowering him to 2.38 over six overall
The right-hander pitched with runners on base in five of his
six-plus innings but escaped trouble with some help from Oakland’s
defense that went into the night tied with Houston for the major
league lead in errors at 27.
The A’s turned a double play in the fourth following Carlos
Santana’s leadoff single, then Suzuki made another stellar play in
the fifth after Ross’ pitch to Grady Sizemore hit the dirt and
bounced several feet away from the Oakland catcher. Suzuki quickly
retrieved the ball then threw out Adam Everett trying to steal
But Oakland couldn’t produce enough offense after they just took
three of four from the Rangers.