CLEVELAND -- It almost seemed like Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez tried to one-up each other at Progressive Field on Sunday.The result could only mean good things for the Indians.Lindor and Ramirez finished a combined 5-for-7, with a pair of doubles and a home run, to help the Tribe claim
CLEVELAND -- It almost seemed like Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez tried to one-up each other at Progressive Field on Sunday.
The result could only mean good things for the Indians.
Lindor and Ramirez finished a combined 5-for-7, with a pair of doubles and a home run, to help the Tribe claim the rubber match against the Royals, 11-2. The pair also scored three runs and knocked in four, helping Corey Kluber cruise to his sixth win.
"They're so talented," Indians manager Terry Francona said of Lindor and Ramirez. "When they start to feel it, man, it is fun to watch. You see what they do with the bat, but they can both run. It's not just singles, they're running around the bases, they're creating energy. It is fun to watch."
A three-run home run from Ramirez put the exclamation point on a five-run second inning, which gave the Tribe a 5-0 lead. The third baseman drove a 2-1 fastball from Royals starter Danny Duffy a projected 394 feet into the left-field bleachers, also scoring Rajai Davis and Michael Brantley.
The blast was the third baseman's 12th of the season. Ramirez also hit a double in the first inning, giving him 14 extra-base hits in his past 13 games.
"They're both obviously good players to begin with," Kluber said. "But when they do get on these streaks, I feel like they have the ability to keep them going for a long time. All of a sudden, a good week turns into a good couple of weeks, turns into a good month. And they both seem to keep it going for a while when they do get hot."
Lindor singled home Yan Gomes in the third inning to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 14 games, surpassing the 13-game hit streak he enjoyed last season (July 21-Aug. 3). The shortstop also led off the fifth with a double down the left-field line, giving him at least one extra-base hit in 11 of the past 12 games.
A three-run homer from Gomes in the fourth knocked Duffy out of the contest, giving the Indians a 9-0 lead. Gomes recorded four hits in five plate appearances, and finished a triple shy of completing the cycle.
"It's motivating for all of us to [feed off each other], especially when [some of us] get hot early," Ramirez said through a translator. "It's really motivating just amongst one another to see that ..."
Brantley also went deep, hitting his fifth homer of the season in the seventh off reliever Brian Flynn. Three-RBI days from Brantley and Ramirez put each of them at 27 for the season, which ties them for the team lead.
"Brantley had a good homestand, Ramirez was swinging the bat [well], which was good," Lindor said. "Gomes had a great game today, and when the pitching staff continues to do what they've been doing for the whole season -- and the last couple years -- that's what happens. We score a lot of runs, and it's fun."
Duffy allowed nine runs off eight hits and five walks in 3 1/3 innings. He's the third Royals starter in five days to surrender nine runs. Kluber on the other hand, improved to 6-2 after giving up two unearned runs on eight hits in seven innings while striking out four.
"I thought [Kluber] pitched to the scoreboard," Francona said. "He was efficient. He threw the ball over the plate and didn't get extended, which I thought was really good. It was nice to get him some runs. He knows what to do with it."
MOMENT THAT MATTERED
Career day: While driving in three and scoring three runs, Gomes' four-hit game tied a career-best for the catcher. The only other four-hit game for Gomes was on Aug. 31, 2014, also against the Royals.
"The best game today was Yan Gomes," Lindor said. "He had a great approach at the plate. He contributed, and he helped Kluber -- he called the right pitches, and that's what matters."
HE SAID IT
"You knew that he wasn't going to be the slow starter that he was before. You know that he's going to come back and start producing like he usually does. And he's a tremendous player. It's one of those things where he's on both sides of the field, so it's exciting to have him on our side, for sure." -- Gomes, on Lindor
Lindor and Ramirez each have 12 home runs, which makes them the fastest duo in Indians history to reach 12 homers since Manny Ramirez and Paul Sorrento did it in 34 games in 1995.
YOU GOTTA SEE THIS
Lindor's seventh-inning single left the bat at 114.5 mph, which ties the team record for the hardest-hit ball since Statcast™ began tracking in 2015. Bradley Zimmer also hit a 114.5-mph double against the A's on May 30, 2017.
Right-hander Carlos Carrasco (5-1, 3.61 ERA) will take the mound on Monday night at 7:10 ET in the first game of a three-game set against the Tigers at Comerica Park. Carrasco's last outing against the Tigers was a complete-game win in which he allowed one run and struck out six. Mike Fiers (3-2, 4.73 ERA) will get the start for the Tigers. Fiers hasn't faced the Indians this season, but gave up two runs and struck out five to pick up a win in his last decision on Tuesday against the Rangers.
Casey Harrison is a reporter for MLB.com.