- Corey Kluber was pretty good - nine strikeouts in six and a third innings
- The Indians left a lot of runs out there on the bases
- Salvador Perez sent the first baseball to Mars
Well, the Royals are mathematically eliminated from winning the division. It’s not like we thought the Royals still had a chance, but now it is literally impossible to win the division. That’s sad in its own way.
Jose Ramirez’s name popped up quite a bit on the scoreboard. In the second inning, he doubled and subsequently scored on a single from Lonnie Chisenhall. In the fifth inning, he doubled in the go-ahead run after doubles from Carlos Santana and Jason Kipnis. He had a third double as well.
Kluber gave up two runs to the Royals on six hits, but four of those hits and both runs came in a sequence of four batters. In the top of the third inning, Kluber started leaving a lot of fastballs and sliders over the plate. The free-swinging Royals were able to make some decent contact and punched four straight singles through the infield to score two runs, all with two outs.
On the other hand, Ian Kennedy gave up only three runs in his five and two-thirds innings despite allowing 10 hits. The Indians overall swung a wet noodle with runners in scoring position.
The Indians did get a runner in scoring position home in the eighth with some classic small ball. Tyler Naquin led off the inning with a single and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt from Roberto Perez. Santana hit a single to center, and Jarrod Dyson’s throw to the plate was way off.
Salvador Perez made it more than interesting in the ninth inning. Off the bat, I thought it was a high can of corn to left field. Then it landed well beyond the wall past left field. NASA should consider launching a rocket from that swing instead of with, like, rocket fuel and stuff.
Alex Gordon walked, and Terrance Gore pinch ran for him. Gore was thrown out stealing for the first time in the regular season. It was a perfect throw. Alcides Escobar then swung at a pitch in the dirt and later grounded out weakly to second base. In the span of just a few pitches, the Royals went from one guy on and no outs to no guys on and two outs. A hard line drive caught by the center fielder brought the ninth to an end.
Overall, this was pretty much a standard issue baseball game. The Royals had OK-ish pitching but lacked consistent offense. They lost 4 to 3, a pretty standard score. The last few years have been anything but standard. Standard is a little sad. Fortunately, that Salvy Mars shot will live on.