Cahill, Padres 'pen blank Indians in opener

July 4th, 2017

CLEVELAND -- Starter and the Padres' bullpen combined to shut out the Indians in a 1-0 win in Tuesday's series opener at Progressive Field.

Cahill was activated from the 10-day disabled list (right shoulder strain) prior to the game, and made his first start since May 13. He went 4 1/3 scoreless innings, allowing four hits and two walks, with four strikeouts. The Padres used five relievers -- , , , Brad Hand and -- to preserve the shutout, combining for 4 2/3 innings and seven strikeouts.

"The pitching staff was outstanding today," Padres manager Andy Green said. "Trevor Cahill coming back, breaking stuff just as good as ever, getting a lot of chases beneath the zone. Then, Jose Torres all the way through Brandon Maurer, everybody was outstanding. Real team win in that regard from the bullpen."

The lone run came in the fifth inning off Indians starter on an RBI fielder's choice by , who also had two hits and a stolen base.

In return from DL, Cahill goes 4 1/3 scoreless

"It was a great team win," Cahill said. "The bullpen picked me up, and we were able to get one across against a guy that's throwing the ball as good as anyone in the league right now, and it showed. Any time you can win those games, I feel like it counts as more than just one win."

In his first start since being named an American League All-Star, Kluber pitched in ace form. He went eight innings and struck out 10, allowing one run on four hits. Kluber's 10-strikeout performance marked his fifth straight start with double-digit strikeouts, setting a new franchise record and leading to a standing ovation after his final strikeout.

"They got loud, which was pretty cool," Kluber said. "It was definitely appreciated."

However, Kluber took the loss, as the Tribe couldn't give him support. Cleveland had a runner reach third base four times, but never capitalized. The Indians went 0-for-10 with runners in scoring position, and 1-for-11 with runners on base.

Kluber tosses gem, K's 10 for 5th start in a row

"It's frustrating," Indians second baseman Jason Kipnis said. "It's not like we're not capable of hitting with guys on base. It's not like we don't have the offense to do it. Just some nights, we press, or we swing at the wrong pitches and don't get it done. Tonight was one of those games. It was unfortunate, because Corey pitched great."


Routine 1-3-2 double play: Cahill worked out of several jams, but perhaps the most important escape came in the second. After allowing a one-out triple to Indians third baseman , the Padres right-hander induced an unconventional 1-3-2 double play to end the inning. After Indians right fielder grounded out on a weak roller back to the mound, first baseman threw home to catcher to nab Ramirez trying to score from third to end the inning.

"When the ball was hit and he first started down, [Ramirez] thought he was far enough down himself to go ahead and go," said bench coach Brad Mills, the acting manager on Tuesday night. "The pitcher just kind of glanced at him, didn't really stop him, but he kind of glanced at him. He thought he was far enough down to go ahead and make it."

"I got [the ball], and I figured he wasn't going," Cahill said. "In my peripherals, I didn't see him going. I just got it and threw it to first, and, fortunately for us, he tried to sneak in. Wil was heads up and got it and threw it right home and threw a strike. That's a huge play to get out of the inning, and saved some bullets for later on in the game."

Lone offense: Kluber cruised until allowing a leadoff single to in the fifth, followed by a walk to . With two on and no outs, Kluber got to hit a grounder to short. But recorded just one out at second, putting runners at the corners with one out. The next batter, Spangenberg, grounded to second, where Kipnis bobbled the ball and recorded only the out at second, allowing Sanchez to score from third.

"I was playing closer to the bag, ground ball right at me," Lindor said of the first double-play chance. "I thought I was still close to the bag. I lost perception of how close I was to the bag, and it's another [mental] error that shouldn't be happening. That was the game right there."

"I know the one to me was [a missed double play]," Kipnis said. "It just caught me in the palm a little bit, top-spinned a little bit more and caught me in the bad part of the glove, and popped out right in front of me. At that point, I just had to rush and get one. That needs to be turned."


"They had a lot of guys on today. That's kind of the second game in a row we've eked out a win, and we've stranded a ton of baserunners. That's pitchers making big pitches, and defenders making big plays." -- Green, on the Padres' victory

"It didn't cross my mind once, to be honest with you. They drafted me, but I've been here since 2010, which is the majority of my career. I never made it past Double-A with the Padres before I got traded, so it's not like I necessarily am playing against the team that I broke in with." -- Kluber, on facing San Diego, which picked him in the fourth round in the 2007 Draft


Since 1913, there have been 27 instances in which a pitcher had at least 10 strikeouts in at least five games in a row. Kluber joins Pedro Martinez (six times), Nolan Ryan (three times), Max Scherzer (once), Curt Schilling (once), Dwight Gooden (once) and J.R. Richard (once) as the only right-handed pitchers to achieve the feat, and is one of 12 total pitchers to do so.


With two outs in the top of the eighth and Spangenberg at second, Kluber got to hit a ground ball to Ramirez at third, but Margot beat the throw to first. Spangenberg tried to score from second, but first baseman threw home to catcher , who tagged Spangenberg on a hesitated, feet-first slide between Gomes' legs to try to score. After Spangenberg was called out, the Padres challenged the play. A review of 2 minutes, 17 seconds confirmed the call, ending the inning.

"Clearly looked safe to me," Green said. "Clearly, from the top step, didn't even feel like I needed a replay to have somebody tell me he was safe. Somebody came in and told me on the home broadcast they were saying that it was clearly safe. I don't know what it is that it didn't get overturned, but from my visual from the side in the dugout, you could see him sneak right under the tag."


Padres: (3-4, 4.71 ERA) will take the mound for the Padres in Wednesday's 4:10 p.m. PT tilt against the Indians at Progressive Field. The right-hander is coming off a win against the Braves, in which he went 5 1/3 innings and allowed four runs on seven hits, with four strikeouts.

Indians: Right-hander (7-6, 5.24 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Tribe in Wednesday's Interleague clash with the Padres at 7:10 p.m. ET. Bauer is 4-2 with a 4.69 ERA at home this season, and the righty is 7-4 with a 3.04 ERA in 19 career Interleague outings.

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