Francisco Lindor hit a home run and Carlos Carrasco pitched five strong innings as the visiting Cleveland Indians ended the regular season with a 2-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals.
Trevor Bauer added four scoreless innings to earn the save in support of Carrasco in his final tune-up before the postseason. The Indians, who finished the season with a 91-71 record, next play Friday at Houston in Game 1 of the American League Division Series.
Lindor hit his 38th home run of the season in the third inning. He also scored in the first inning after he stole third base and came home when Royals third baseman Alcides Escobar could not handle the throw.
Carrasco (17-10) gave up just one run on three hits, with two walks and six strikeouts. The right-hander, who won for the first time since Aug. 28, is next expected to pitch in Game 2 of the ALDS.
In just his third appearance since returning from the disabled list, Bauer retired 12 of the 14 batters he faced, while making his first relief appearance of the season. He earned his first career save.
Rookie Meibrys Viloria had an RBI single in the fifth inning for the Royals’ only run. I
Royals starter Eric Skoglund (1-6) gave up two runs (one earned) on three hits over five innings, with two walks and three strikeouts.
The Royals finished the season with a 58-104 record, their worst season since losing 106 games in 2005. They are just three years removed from their 2015 World Series title.
The Royals’ Whit Merrifield delivered an eighth-inning single and ended his season on a 20-game hitting streak, the longest in the major leagues in 2018. He also stole his 45th base to lead the major leagues.
Merrifield’s 192 hits were the most in baseball as he became just the third Royals player to lead baseball in hits, along with Willie Wilson (1980) and George Brett (1976, 1979).
The Indians were 12-7 against the Royals this season and went 49-27 against AL Central opponents. The Indians’ Melky Cabrera went 0-for-3 to end his nine-game hitting streak, which had been the longest active hitting streak on the club.
—Field Level Media