Royals execute new softball type rule, Indians don't, Royals win 3-2 in 10 innings
BY TIM SHIRER
On Saturday afternoon the Cleveland Indians hosted the Kansas City Royals at Progressive Field for game two of their three game series. After the Indians won the season opener on Friday night 2-0 with a historic 14 strikeout performance by Shane Bieber. Mike Clevinger took the mound for the Tribe Saturday night and he had a rough first inning but pitched well. However, a new rule came into play and the Indians were on the short end falling 3-2 in 10 innings.
The trouble started in the first inning for Clevinger as he allowed back to back solo home runs to Jorge Soler and Salvador Perez to give the KC the early 2-0 lead.
Meanwhile the Royals sent rookie Brady Singer to the mound to make his Major League debut. Singer was Kansas City’s number one pick (18th overall) in the draft in 2018. Singer looked brilliant through the first two innings, looking more like a veteran than a rookie making his first big league start.
The third inning however was a bit of a different story. After retiring Roberto Perez on strikes to start the frame, Bradley Zimmer singled to right field. Cesar Hernandez then poked a single up the middle and Zimmer moved to second. Jose Ramirez then belted the third consecutive single off Singer to right field and Zimmer scored the Tribe’s first run. Singer then punched out Lindor on strikes. With Carlos Santana at the plate Singer uncorked a wild pitch and Hernandez crossed home plate tying the game 2-2. Singer did get out of the inning without any further trouble when he got Santana to ground out to first base to end the inning.
After the third inning the pitching dominated for the next six innings. Clevinger went seven innings allowing four hits, two runs, both earned while striking out six Royals. Wittgren came and pitched a scoreless inning in the eighth for the second consecutive night. James Karinchak came on to pitch a perfect ninth inning throwing ten pitches, nine were strikes. Karinchak stayed in to pitch the tenth. Singer went five innings in his big-league debut for the Royals. He gave up the two runs on three hits, while walking two Indians. He also struck out seven.
In the ninth inning the Indians threatened when they loaded the bases with one out, but failed to score as last night’s Royal’s reliever Scott Barlow who allowed the two Indians runs to score (they were charged to starter Danny Duffy as he put them on base) was able to work out of the bases loaded jam as he struck out Mercado and Perez to end the threat.
Then came the tenth inning when the pathetic Rob Manfred Rule came into effect when the Royals had a runner on second base to start the tenth inning. The runner, Brett Phillips who pinch ran for Alex Gordon who was the last out of the previous inning. Erick Mejia then executed a perfect bunt to move Phillips to third base. The Royals then took a 3-2 lead when Karinchak got Maikel Franco to fly to deep center field and Phillips trotted home.
The Indians also started with the Manfred runner to start the tenth inning and Bradley Zimmer was hit by a pitch to start the inning to put men on first and second base. Greg Holland who started the inning on the mound for the Royals struck out a bewildered looking Hernandez for the first out and then got Ramirez swinging for the second out. Then came to the plate the Indians last hope. The guy who wants $30 million a year, Francisco Lindor and he struck out swinging to end the game. Mr. Smile has looked more like Mr. Frown through the first two games as he has one hit in nine plate appearances.
Karinchak took the “Manfred loss” and falls to 0-1. Barlow, who in all fairness pitched worse than Karinchak picks up the win and improves to 1-0.
The Indians and Royals will finish the three-game series tomorrow at 1:10. Carlos Carrasco will make his first start of the season. The Royals have not yet announced who will be on the mound for them.
POSTED 07/25/2020 20:26