Tribe completes lost weekend in Minnesota with 3-1 loss
BY TIM SHIRER
This weekend in Minneapolis was not a fun or successful one for the Cleveland Indians. For Cleveland fans the frustrating weekend in Minnesota is like what they experience on Sunday’s from September through December. The Indians offense has been a no show through the first nine games of the season which is a shame since the pitching has been among the best in baseball. Today was no different as the Indians managed only one run in a 3-1 loss to the Twins and leave Minnesota with a three-game losing streak.
The Twins got on the board right away in the first inning when Max Kepler led the game of with a disputed ground rule double down the right field line. The Indians challenged the double saying it was fair. Originally Kepler moved to third base on the play but was returned to second after review and it was determined that the ball was fair but bounced out of play into the right field stands before reentering the playing field. Kepler scored one batter later when Jorge Polanco singled down the left field line giving the Twins the early 1-0 lead.
The Twins put their second run of the game on the board in the second inning when Twins catcher Mitch Garver led of the inning with a solo home run on a 3-2 pitch. The home run was Garver’s first of the 2020 season.
The Twins kept the theme going with another run in the third inning when with one out Kepler hit his second double of the game down the right field line. Kepler scored two batters later with two outs when Nelson Cruz singled to center putting the Twins on top 3-0.
The Indians scored their only run of the game and just fourth of the four game series in the fourth inning when Cesar Hernandez doubled to lead off the inning. After Jose Ramirez grounded out to the shortstop, Francisco Lindor singled to left field scoring Hernandez to get the Tribe on the board and cut the lead to 3-1. Lindor was thrown out trying to stretch the single to a double by Twins left fielder Eddie Rosario.
Aaron Civale who started the game for Indians pitched well, but suffered the loss falling to 1-1 on the season with a 3.75 ERA. Civale went six innings, allowing three runs, all earned on five base hits. He struck out nine Twins while issuing no base on balls.
Meanwhile the Twins who were supposed to have Homer Bailey on the mound pitched a bullpen game. Bailey was scratched prior to the game with a shoulder issue. Former Indian Tyler Clippard started for the Twins and pitched two scoreless innings allowing no base runners and striking out one. You get the picture, no reason to give the line of every Twins pitcher. Devin Smeltzer relieved Clippard and allowed the only run of the game pitching two and two thirds innings. Smeltzer picked up the win, his first of the year moving to 1-0 with a 11.57 ERA. Sergio Romo pitched a scoreless ninth for the Twins as Ramirez, Lindor and Carlos Santana went down quietly. For Romo it was his second save of the season and he kept his ERA clean at 0.00.
The Indians will attempt to get the offense moving on Monday when they head to Cincinnati to face the Reds for two games. Monday’s game time is 6:40 p.m. The Reds will send Sonny Gray to the mound. Gray a righthander is 2-0 with an 0.71 ERA. The Tribe will have Zach Plesac on the hill. Plesac is 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA.
POSTED 08/02/2020 17:09