Last Sunday, the Indians played the Royals. They scored 15 runs. Today, the Indians played the Royals on a sun-drenched Sunday afternoon. They scored 15 runs. Keyed by a 10-run explosion in the fifth inning, Zach McAllister won for the first time since August 11, as the Indians blew out the Royals by a 15-3 score, to win their second consecutive series.
For four and a half innings, it was a tightly contested affair. The Indians used three second inning singles to score the game's only run. Jack Hannahan singled with one out, Casey Kotchman extended the inning with a two-out single, and Lou Marson picked up the big hit, a two-out RBI single to put the Tribe ahead 1-0. Meanwhile, Zach McAllister was sailing along, allowing just one hit and one walk through the first five innings. Pitching with the slimmest of leads, McAllister kept the Royals at bay until the Indians exploded.
Shin-Soo Choo doubled and stole third to start off the fifth. Jason Kipnis hit a ground rule double to right to score Choo. Asdrubal Cabrera, who couldn't have had two more contrasting kinds of hits in the inning, reached on a bunt single, sending Kipnis to third. After Lonnie Chisenhall struck out, Hannahan doubled to right to score Kipnis, with Cabrera stopping at third. Brent Lillibridge walked to load the bases. Kotchman bounced into a fielder's choice that scored Cabrera. With two outs, the bottom of the Indians order reached without a hit. Marson walked and, with the bases loaded, Jason Donald was hit by a pitch. Choo followed with a two-run single to center. Kipnis walked to load the bases. Finally, Cabrera put the cherry on top with a grand slam to deep left off reliever Everett Teaford to put the Indians ahead 11-0 and give them their first 10-run inning since May 16, 2011.
McAllister relaxed with the big lead and gave up a two-run blast to Alex Gordon in the sixth. He gave up another run in the seventh before exiting the ballgame. In his final 2012 start, McAllister went 6.2 innings, allowing three runs on five hits, with a couple of walks and two strikeouts.
Matt LaPorta doubled home a run in the seventh. The Indians emptied their bench in the eighth and scored a couple of runs, one on a Cord Phelps RBI single and one on a wild pitch. The Indians pounded out 19 hits to go along with their 15 runs.
With the win, the Indians improved to 67-92, while the Royals dropped to 71-88. Zach McAllister was the winner, finishing out 2012 with a 6-8 record and a 4.24 ERA. Luke Hochevar took his 16th loss of the season.
Stat of the Day: The back-to-back series victories are the first for the Indians since June 28 through July 4.
Player of the Game: Asdrubal Cabrera. Three hits, three runs scored, and a grand slam. A nice day for a guy who has battled a wrist injury throughout the second half.
Tomorrow's Game: The White Sox will come to town on the brink of elimination, trailing the Tigers in the AL Central by three games with three games to play. Hector Santiago will face off against Corey Kluber at 7:05.