Mike Clevinger allowed one hit and struck out 10 over five scoreless innings as the host Cleveland Indians completed a four-game series sweep of the Toronto Blue Jays with a 3-1 victory on Sunday afternoon.
Cleveland’s Tyler Naquin highlighted his three-hit performance with an RBI single in the first inning that plated Carlos Santana, who had a run-scoring double in the previous at-bat to extend his hitting streak to eight games.
Jose Ramirez added an RBI single with two outs in the fifth inning for the Indians, whose pitching staff recorded 57 strikeouts in the four-game series.
Danny Jansen jumped on a first-pitch fastball from Adam Cimber for an RBI single in the eighth inning for the reeling Blue Jays, who spiraled to their seventh loss in eight games. Brad Hand relieved Cimber and promptly induced Lourdes Gurriel Jr. to ground into an inning-ending double play before retiring the side in the ninth for his fourth save.
Toronto’s Freddy Galvis, who homered in back-to-back games, ripped a double to put runners on second and third with no outs in the fourth inning before Clevinger struck out the next three batters.
Cleveland announced upper back tightness as the reason for the premature exit of Clevinger (1-0), who looked every bit as dominant as he was after collecting a career-high 12 strikeouts in a no-decision versus the Chicago White Sox last week.
Neil Ramirez replaced Clevinger on the mound and struck out the side on 11 pitches in the sixth inning.
Cleveland scored twice with two outs in the first inning to get the early jump on Toronto for the second straight game. Santana deposited a 2-2 fastball from Marcus Stroman (0-2) down the left-field line to score Jake Bauers. Santana didn’t stay on second base for long as Naquin blooped an 0-1 cutter into left field for an RBI single.
Jose Ramirez gave the Indians a 3-0 lead after he sent Stroman’s breaking ball through the gap in the defensive shift.
Stroman allowed three runs on six hits in six innings for the Blue Jays, who have struck out at least 10 times in four straight games and seven times in 11 contests this season.
—Field Level Media