Resilient Tribe use seven-run rally in fifth to top Mariners
Seattle, WA, United States (AHN Sports) – Carlos Santana highlighted a seven-run fifth inning with a three-run homer, as the Cleveland Indians rallied past the Seattle Mariners 9-8 Tuesday night, in the opener of a three-game set at Safeco Field.
Jason Donald tallied two hits and knocked in two runs, including a tiebreaking single off Seattle reliever Tom Wilhelmsen in the top of the seventh, capping the Tribe’s rally from a seven-run deficit.
Shins-Soo Choo also finished with two hits and knocked in two runs for the Indians, who trailed 8-1 entering the fifth as the Mariners’ bats broke out for a six-run burst in the fourth frame.
The Indians have registered a homer in every game this season after Santana unleashed the main blow in Cleveland’s seven-run explosion via a three-run blast which drew them to 8-7.
Donald, who was subbing for Asdrubal Cabrera, who left the team Monday following the death of his grandfather in Venezuela, then ripped a sacrifice fly off reliever Erasmo Ramirez to wrap up the seventh and tie it at 8-8.
The Tribe’s relief pitching also factored in the win after Indian starter Justin Masterson struggled. Cleveland right-handed sinkerballer Masterson, who came in 0-1 with a 2.77 ERA, allowed eight runs on seven hits and four walks in 3 2-3 innings.
Masterson’s counterpart, Seattle starter Kevin Millwood also did not fare well, despite four solid innings. Millwood, a former Indian, yielded seven runs — six earned — on nine hits over four innings.
Cleveland reliever Rafael Perez (1-0) claimed the win after pitching a scoreless sixth inning.