NEW YORK -- For four innings on Saturday afternoon, Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer was perfect. It turned out to be the calm before a disastrous storm.Bauer labored with his command and shortstop Francisco Lindor made a pair of costly errors, leading to a four-run fifth inning that sent Cleveland on
NEW YORK -- For four innings on Saturday afternoon, Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer was perfect. It turned out to be the calm before a disastrous storm.
Bauer labored with his command and shortstop Francisco Lindor made a pair of costly errors, leading to a four-run fifth inning that sent Cleveland on its way to a 5-2 loss to the Yankees in the Bronx. For Lindor, it was his third damaging error in the past two defeats, and the shortstop made no excuses after the latest lapse.
"Both games have been lost because of me. That's unacceptable," Lindor said. "The pitchers have been doing a great job. The defense has been doing a great job. Hitters are doing a great job. The only one who's not doing a great job is me. Put it all on me. I'm not helping.
"I continue to learn from my mistakes. I continue to try to become the best player I can be. I'm not helping my team. I'm not helping my team. That's something that bothers me. It hurts me."
After Bauer was perfect through 13 batters, the Tribe starter issued three walks and allowed a single to record a bases-loaded jam with the score knotted, 1-1, in the fifth. That's when New York's Ronald Torreyes sent a chopper to Lindor, who made a fielding error and throwing miscue on the same play to help the Yankees to two runs.
Lindor bobbled the ball before picking it up from the dirt and rushing a quick throw to third baseman Jose Ramirez in an effort to create an out. The ball sailed into foul territory, allowing both Miguel Andujar and Gleyber Torres to score, giving the Yankees a 3-1 advantage. Brett Gardner followed with a sacrifice fly to pad New York's lead.
"It's tough," Bauer said. "I put myself in hot water and made a pitch to get out of it and we didn't make the play. It's not his fault. It's not my fault. It's not any one person's fault in a loss. It's a team effort. If I don't put three guys on base, then it doesn't matter. So it's just frustrating."
That chain of events came after Lindor put the Indians on the board with a homer in the top of the fifth.
Facing Sonny Gray, Lindor launched a 3-2 two-seamer over the right-field wall, sending it into the seats for a two-out solo homer that put the Tribe ahead, 1-0. The homer was the eighth of the season for the Indians' shortstop and his fourth in a span of five games in the past four days.
Bauer took the loss after being charged with four runs (two earned) on only two hits in six innings. The right-hander struck out eight and issued three walks in a 102-pitch effort that was strong with the exception of the fifth-inning meltdown.
"For four innings, I thought that was as good as he can pitch," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "He made the one pitch he needed and we couldn't convert it. That's hard, because he was so deep into that inning and he really made a good pitch.
"We had a chance to get out of that and then, not only did we not get out of it, but runners advanced and it kind of turned into a mess."
MOMENT THAT MATTERED
A challenging challenge: On Gardner's sac fly in the fifth, Torreyes tagged up and sprinted from second to third, arriving with a head-first slide at the same time as Michael Brantley's throw from left. Ramirez made a lunging tag while Torreyes reached for the base with his left hand, and third-base umpire Tim Timmons called the runner safe. If Torreyes was out, the inning would have ended, and the fourth run may have been taken off the board.
Francona did not challenge the call, but only because the Indians did not get the replay view they wanted within the allotted time.
"You know what? We were dying to [challenge]," Francona said. "We talked to the league already. We're having a tough time getting the slow motion [replay in time]. So, what happens is it's blurry, so there's nothing that we can [see] definitive. And then later, the slo-mo comes in, and that would be the view [the officials in the replay review center] get.
"We're having a tough time with the technology. It's been kind of ongoing. We're trying to work through it, because we feel handcuffed a little bit."
ZIMMER EXITS EARLY
With out out in the seventh inning, Indians center fielder Bradley Zimmer sold out to make a catch deep in the outfield, but wound up exiting the game after a violent crash into the wall. In trying to track down a fly ball off the bat of Austin Romine, Zimmer jumped at the warning track, got a glove on the ball, but then slammed into the wall before tumbling to the ground as the ball bounced away. After being checked by Francona and an athletic trainer, Zimmer left the game. Zimmer was diagnosed with a left shoulder contusion, but he is not expected to miss much time.
"I think he's OK," Francona said. "He said he's going to play [Sunday]. Certainly, we'll see how he wakes up, but I think he's OK. He hit that wall pretty hard." More >
HE SAID IT
"I walked three guys and threw a bunch of pitches and then still almost skated out of it. I think I ended the night with 102 [pitches]. I spent about 10 minutes trying to convince people to let me go back out there, because I felt great. My velo was way up today. All my stuff was really good. The bullpen's been beat up a little bit, so I tried to convince someone to let me go back out there and keep pitching." --Bauer
Right-hander Mike Clevinger (2-0, 2.82 ERA) will look to continue his strong start to the season on Sunday, when the Indians conclude a three-game set against the Yankees with a 1:05 p.m. ET tilt in the Bronx. Clevinger has gone 9-3 with a 2.00 ERA in 14 road games (76 2/3 innings) over the past two seasons. New York will counter with righty Domingo German (0-1, 3.77 ERA).
Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and Facebook.