The Cleveland Indians took on the Milwaukee Brewers at Maryvale Park on Saturday, winning 3-2 in another low-scoring game. There were plenty of stranded base runners, as the Indians managed nine hits and three walks behind Zach McAllister, while starter Wily Peralta and the Brewers had eight hits and one walk.
First Inning: McAllister Fights for His Spot
It didn’t seem as though McAllister would do very well in one of his final chances to prove he belongs in the Tribe’s rotation, but he ended up impressing. The first inning started off poorly, with a one-out base hit off the bat of Jean Segura. Ryan Braun hit an RBI double to right field to put the Brewers up 1-0, but that was the only damage they did before McAllister settled in. He struck out five in a row and allowed just two additional hits until the fifth inning, when Peralta singled and Segura reached on a wild-pitch strikeout. With runners at first and second, Braun struck again, adding a RBI single to his totals.
Third Inning: Jason Kipnis Returns
With one out in the third inning, Jose Ramirez showed off his wheels as he easily reached third base on a triple to center field. After Michael Bourn grounded out, Kipnis launched a towering two-out home run to center field.
Eighth Inning: Scoring the Winning Run
The Tribe struck again in the eighth inning, when Ryan Rohlinger singled, Mike Papi walked and Yan Gomes loaded the bases with another hit. Michael Martinez grounded out, but Rohlinger was able to score on the play to put the Tribe up 3-2.
McAllister only lasted five innings, but he was impressive. Despite giving up six hits, he allowed just two runs and struck out nine without walking a single batter. He’s done everything the Indians have asked of him this spring, and he absolutely has earned a rotation spot based on his performance throughout March. His only fault is that his effectiveness decreases once he starts going through the lineup a second time, and that might make him a more likely candidate for the bullpen.
The Tribe allowed three wild pitches and made an error, and their defense looked sloppy overall. At one point, Gomes didn’t stop a wild pitch, threw it past Aguilar, and then Kipnis almost threw it over the head of Aguilar after he scooped the ball up from the edge of the outfield. The Indians can’t afford to be that team this season. It very well could have been the factor that cost them a playoff spot last year.
Check It Out:
– Tribe relievers combined for six strikeouts and continued to impress, with perfect innings from lefties Nick Hagadone and Kyle Crockett. Austin Adams and Trey Haley each gave up a hit in their respective innings, and Haley also allowed a walk, but the Brewers couldn’t manage a single run off the Indians’ bullpen.
– The final week of Spring Training starts tomorrow, as the Tribe takes on the Chicago White Sox at Goodyear Ballpark. Left-hander T.J. House will face off against righty Scott Carroll, as House continues to make his case for a rotation spot. So far this spring, House has a 5.60 ERA in 17.2 innings, along with 15 strikeouts and 3 walks.