There are too many games that we all pay attention to throughout the season to focus on single games, but every now and then a game comes along that grabs my fascination.
Yesterday afternoon I was listening to the Mariners and Indians game and allow me to review the craziness of this Cleveland event.
First, a little background.
This was the fourth game of a four-game set:
On Friday night, Jason Kipnis hit a three-run walkoff homer with two outs in the 10th inning off Lucas Luetge to give the Indians a 6-3 win over the Mariners.
Saturday, Cleveland closer Chris Perez allowed two-out solo homers to Raul Ibanez and Justin Smoak that tied the score in the top of the 9th, then in the bottom of the inning Jason Kipnis scored the winning run when Brendan Ryan‘s throw pulled catcher Jesus Montero off the plate with the bases loaded, to give the Indians a 5-4 victory over Seattle.
Ryan Raburn and Yan Gomes homered in the bottom of the 2nd off Mariners starter Hisashi Iwakuma, to give Cleveland a 4-2 lead. Iwakuma entered the game with a 1.84 ERA and had not allowed four runs in any of his previous nine starts this season, in 13 straight starts going back to 2012, and had allowed four earned runs in only one of his previous 23 starts before allowing four in one inning yesterday.
The Mariners tied the score, 4-4, with a pair in the top of the 3rd.
And Cleveland retook the lead in the bottom of the 3rd, 5-4.
But the Mariners came right back in the top of the 4th to tie the score, 5-5.
Shockingly, each team went scoreless in the 5th and 6th innings.
In the bottom of the 7th, the Indians took a 6-5 lead.
Then came a fascinating series of events for the Mariners as Kyle Seager homered to tie they game, 6-6, in the top of the 8th.
In the top of the 9th, with the Indians’ closer Chris Perez on the mound, Endy Chavez homered to give the Mariners a 7-6 lead.
In the top of the 10th, for the third successive inning, the Mariners hit a solo home run, this one by Smoak. This go-ahead homer gave Seattle an 8-7 lead heading into the bottom of the 10th.
Charlie Furbush took the mound for the Mariner in the 10th and Michael Brantley led off with a bloop single. Next, Drew Stubbs reached on an error by Smoak when Furbush fielded a bunt, looked at second a bit too long, then hurried his throw.
Up stepped Yan Gomes, who hit his second homer of the game, this one a three-run walkoff homer that gave the Indians a 10-8 victory, a four-game sweep with three walkoffs and their 18th win in 22 games.
“It’s tough, not easy,” Justin Smoak said. “Three walkoff (losses) is never good in a four-game series.”
Mariners manager Eric Wedge said, “We kept coming back and kept taking the lead,” he said. “We just weren’t able to make plays and make pitches when we needed to late.
“We were so close to winning that ballgame. We’re just on the south side of things right now. We still have to look at the baseball we’ve been playing and the teams we’ve been playing — two first-place clubs in New York and Cleveland. We’ve played seven games now on this road trip and easily could have won six of them, so we’re that close.
“But you’ve got to execute and you’ve got to make plays late in the ballgame to finish those types of games off.”
“We’re glad to leave Cleveland,” Tom Wilhelmsen said summing it up best.
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