Oakland at Cleveland

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Oakland (39-37)0100201015100
Cleveland (45-31) «1020000058110

Shoppach's three-run homer caps Indians' rally over Athletics

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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CLEVELAND -- Kelly Shoppach swung like he knew exactly what pitch was coming.

Cleveland's reserve catcher connected for a pinch-hit three-run homer to cap a five-run ninth inning rally and give the Cleveland Indians an 8-5 win over the Oakland Athletics on Tuesday night.

Shoppach caught Alan Embree (1-1) when they both played for the Red Sox three years ago.

"It was do or die," the catcher said. "I knew he'd go with his bread and butter and not let a young guy beat him on his second or third pitch."

Shoppach hit the 1-0 fastball into the left-field bleachers for his fourth homer, then was pounded by jubilant teammates as he crossed the plate.

"It was exciting," Shoppach said. "I ran harder than usual because I was in a hurry to get beat up."

Cleveland's sixth win in nine games pulled the Indians into a first-place tie with Detroit in the AL Central and extended Oakland's losing streak to a season-high five games.

"It was a strike and he let me know how good a strike it was by the way he hit it," Embree said. "This could have been a big lift for us. I let us down. It definitely stinks."

Travis Hafner's two-out, two-run double tied it.

Grady Sizemore drew a one-out walk off Embree, who had blown only one of nine previous save chances. With two outs, Victor Martinez walked on four pitches and pitching coach Curt Young went to the mound to speak with Embree.

Hafner lined the next pitch to right-center to tie it at 5.

"I was pumped up," said Hafner, who pumped his fist in glee at second base after the hit. "I had a chance earlier with the bases loaded and didn't come through. If I don't get a hit there, the game is over."

After Jhonny Peralta was intentionally walked, Shoppach batted for utility infielder Mike Rouse and delivered the Indians' sixth win of the season in their last at-bat at Jacobs Field.

"This team always has a chance, it really does," said Shoppach, hitting .382 with 16 RBI in 29 games. "It's a pretty special club. We all believe in one another."

The rally kept Athletics ace Dan Haren from earning his 10th consecutive win and gave the victory to Rafael Betancourt (1-0), who yielded Shannon Stewart's fifth homer in the top of the ninth that put Oakland ahead 5-3.

Mark Ellis had four hits and three RBI for Oakland.

Haren, who has not lost in 15 starts since falling to 0-2 in his second start of the season April 7, gave up three runs and eight hits over 6 2/3 innings. His ERA rose to 1.91. His nine-game winning streak matches Boston's Josh Beckett for the longest in the majors this year.

"He did a great job," manager Bob Geren said. "It was hot. He battled. He pitched well against a very good hitting team.

"It was a tough loss, obviously. We had it won and they came back and took it from us."

Haren fell behind 3-1 in the third inning before settling in. He retired 13 of 14 until Josh Barfield singled with one out in the seventh and Sizemore followed with a walk.

Haren got Casey Blake to pop to second, but walked Martinez to load the bases and was replaced by right-hander Santiago Casilla.

The rookie got lefty Hafner to line out to center on a 2-2 pitch to end the threat. Hafner stepped to the plate hitting .388 (19-for-49) with nine homers and 70 RBI in his career with the bases loaded.

Ellis hit a two-run homer in the fifth off Indians starter Cliff Lee and doubled in the go-ahead run in the seventh against Tom Mastny, who wiggled out of further trouble.

Stewart singled with one out and scored on Ellis' double for a 4-3 lead. After Nick Swisher was intentionally walked, Mastny struck out Eric Chavez and catcher Martinez threw out Ellis trying to steal third to complete an inning-ending double play.

Ellis' two-run homer, his eighth, tied it at 3 in the fifth.

Sizemore doubled and scored on Peralta's two-out single in the first.

Jack Cust homered on an 0-2 pitch by Lee to tie it in the second. The drive to right-center was his 12th homer of the season and fourth in 15 at bats against Cleveland.

Sizemore opened the third with his 13th homer. Blake then singled, went to third on a double by Martinez, and scored on a groundout by Hafner to make it 3-1.

Notes

  • The win was the Indians' 150th in their last at bat at Jacobs Field, which opened in 1994.
  • Shoppach's shot was the 49th walkoff homer at the ballpark and first since Peralta did it Aug. 30.
  • Sizemore is 8-for-14 (.571) in his career against Haren.
  • Embree had only eight saves in 729 career appearances before this season.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Happy time: Cleveland's Kelly Shoppach comes up big in the 9th, smashing a three-run home run.  (AP)
Happy time: Cleveland's Kelly Shoppach comes up big in the 9th, smashing a three-run home run. (AP)

Players of the Game
Oakland

M. Ellis
AB 5
R 1
H 4
HR 1
RBI 3
Cleveland

K. Shoppach
AB 1
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 3
 

Related Video

Oakland Athletics
Shannon Stewart, LF5231001 .283
Mark Ellis, 2B5143012 .276
Nick Swisher, RF2000211 .281
Eric Chavez, 3B4000016 .236
Jack Cust, DH4111013 .269
Bobby Crosby, SS4000010 .234
Dan Johnson, 1B4010010 .249
Mark Kotsay, CF4000001 .233
Jason Kendall, C3110100 .215
Totals35510536  
Batting
2B - Mark Ellis (14, Mastny), Jason Kendall (8, Lee)
HR - Shannon Stewart (5, Betancourt), Mark Ellis (8, Lee), Jack Cust (12, Lee)
RBI - Shannon Stewart (22), Mark Ellis 3 (40), Jack Cust (29)
2-OUT RBI - Shannon Stewart (17)
CS - Mark Ellis (2, 3rd base by R. Perez/Martinez)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Chavez-Johnson
Oakland Athletics
Dan Haren 6.2833341 1.91
Santiago Casilla (H,2) 1.1100020 0.66
Alan Embree (BS,2; L,1-1) 0.2255301 4.25
IBB - Peralta by Alan Embree
WP - Dan Haren (6)
Pitches-Strikes - Dan Haren 105-66, Santiago Casilla 30-21, Alan Embree 24-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Dan Haren 9-6
Batters Faced - Dan Haren 30, Santiago Casilla 5, Alan Embree 7
Cleveland Indians
Grady Sizemore, CF3321201 .282
Casey Blake, 3B-1B5110004 .273
Victor Martinez, C3010211 .313
    Ben Francisco, PR0100000 .000
Travis Hafner, DH4113103 .259
Jhonny Peralta, SS4111111 .281
Ryan Garko, 1B4010003 .292
    Mike Rouse, PR-3B0000000 .122
   a- Kelly Shoppach, PH1113000 .382
Trot Nixon, RF4000031 .239
Jason Michaels, LF4010011 .298
Josh Barfield, 2B4020001 .267
Totals36811866  
a-homered for Rouse in the 9th
Batting
2B - Grady Sizemore (14, Haren), Victor Martinez (16, Haren), Travis Hafner (9, Embree)
HR - Grady Sizemore (13, Haren), Kelly Shoppach (4, Embree)
RBI - Grady Sizemore (35), Travis Hafner 3 (50), Jhonny Peralta (44), Kelly Shoppach 3 (16)
2-OUT RBI - Travis Hafner 2 (14), Jhonny Peralta (16), Kelly Shoppach 3 (9)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Jason Michaels 1
DP - Martinez-Blake
Cleveland Indians
Cliff Lee 6633232 5.37
Thomas Mastny 0.1211100 5.23
Rafael Perez 2000030 0.87
Rafael Betancourt (W,1-0) 0.2211001 1.35
IBB - Swisher by Thomas Mastny
Pitches-Strikes - Cliff Lee 95-63, Thomas Mastny 15-8, Rafael Perez 21-13, Rafael Betancourt 11-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Cliff Lee 4-11, Rafael Perez 1-1
Batters Faced - Cliff Lee 26, Thomas Mastny 4, Rafael Perez 5, Rafael Betancourt 3
Game Information
Attendance - 18494
Game Time - 3:15
Temperature - 89
Umpires - Home - Paul Nauert, First Base - Gerry Davis, Second Base - Brian Gorman, Third Base - Mike Everitt