The Cleveland Indians defeated the Kansas City Royals at home by a score of 10-5 en route to winning thier sixth straight game.
Six straight wins is nothing to scoff at. Especially considering they are still climbing their way back up in the standings. With their 10-5 win over the Kansas City Royals, the Cleveland Indians are now only three games back of the Minnesota Twins.
Shane Bieber got the start and things were a bit controversial in the first inning. A very weak balk call on Bieber allowed a run to score. The problem? It was not really a balk.
Bieber settled back in for a while before a single loaded the bases in the sixth. Nick Goody was not able to get out of the inning as Whit Merrifield hit a bases clearing triple to cut the Cleveland lead at the time to just one run. Bieber finished with five runs being charged to him over 5.2 innings. The issue for Bieber on Friday was walks. Bieber walked four batters in the contest compared to just striking six. Combine this with the seven hits allowed and it was not necessarily a good outing for Bieber, even though he does come away with the win.
Indians offense keeps on producing
After finding themselves down 2-1 in the third inning the Tribe got to work at the plate. Tyler Naquin hit a towering shot off the right field foul pole to give the Indians a 3-2 lead.
After Francisco Lindor reached on a double, Oscar Mercado drove him in to make it 4-2. Mercado would later score on a Jose Ramirez ground out.
After the lead was cut to one in the sixth Oscar Mercado came up big again. Mercado singled allowing Naquin to score. This gave Cleveland a bit more room for error. Luckily the margin for error was not needed Friday.
Cleveland would score three more runs in the eighth inning. Greg Allen was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Jose Ramirez came through with an RBI single and finally Jason Kipnis hit a sacrifice fly to give the Tribe their 10th run of the game.
Oscar Mercado finished the game with a 5-5 effort at the plate. Mercado is the first Indians rookie since Jason Kipnis in 2011 to finish with a five hit game and is only the 12th Indians rookie to accomplish this feat.
Oscar Mercado and Tyler Naquin are currently leading the Indians in batting average (among qualified players of course). This is a development that many did not expect and may be able the help them make that push in the division race.