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Cleveland at Tampa Bay

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Cleveland (68-54) «0300111208150
Tampa Bay (46-76)000000100130

Westbrook, Cabrera gang up on major league-worst Rays

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Jake Westbrook has found his pitching groove in time for a playoff stretch run.

Westbrook gave up one run over seven innings, Asdrubal Cabrera hit his first major league homer and the Cleveland Indians beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 8-1 Saturday night.

Grady Sizemore also went deep for the AL Central-leading Indians, who extended their advantage over the Tigers to 1½ games. Detroit lost 5-2 against the New York Yankees. Cleveland has won three in a row following a four-game losing streak.

"We're getting close to September, so now every win counts," Westbrook said. "Every win is big right now and hopefully we can do everything we can to kind of separate ourselves from Detroit."

Westbrook (4-7) allowed just two hits, including an RBI double by Carlos Pena with two outs in the seventh. The right-hander, who spent time earlier this season on the disabled list with a left abdominal strain, has won three of his last four starts.

"For me, it's just getting into a rhythm," Westbrook said. "It's about pitching with confidence and being able to locate my pitches. Right now I feel good on where I am, and hopefully I can continue to be there."

Westbrook struck out four and walked two during his 91-pitch outing.

"You look at the last five starts, maybe he's been the Jake Westbrook that we know him to be out there and even beyond that at times," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "Jake was outstanding again today. He's really stringing them together right now."

Cabrera's three-run drive off Jason Hammel (1-3) put the Indians ahead 3-0 in the second. Called up from Triple-A Buffalo on Aug. 7, the rookie got his first career RBI on a sacrifice fly in Cleveland's 2-1 win over Tampa Bay on Friday.

"That's a big three-run homer," Wedge said. "That is what got it started, and the guys just added on from there."

Hammel gave up four runs and eight hits in five innings. He is winless in 15 major league starts, including six this season.

"Early in the game, too many pitches," said Hammel, who threw 105. "Picking the corners instead of just attacking."

The Devil Rays have the majors' worst record at 46-76 and have lost 36 of 49 since June 25. Tampa Bay has not homered in eight straight games and have scored just 17 runs over the stretch.

"It just ain't happening right now," Devil Rays left fielder Carl Crawford said. "It's late August. ... Probably a little tired. That's the only thing I can think of. We'll start swinging again."

Sizemore made it 4-0 in the fifth with his 21st homer of the season. He has a hit in 22 of his last 24 games.

Kenny Lofton singled in a run in the sixth and Ryan Garko hit an RBI double in the seventh to extend the Indians' lead to 6-0. Garko has two RBIs in his past 14 games.

Casey Blake's two-run single in the eighth put Cleveland up 8-1.

Crawford singled with one out in the fourth for Tampa Bay's first hit, but B.J. Upton grounded into a double play.

Notes

  • Umpire Jerry Crawford missed the game with a back injury. Mike Estabrook replaced him.
  • Cleveland DH Travis Hafner (knee and hamstring) and RF Trot Nixon (flulike symptoms) were both back in the starting lineup.
  • Devil Rays minor league LHP James Houser was suspended 50 games after testing positive for a banned performance-enhancing substance.
  • Indians LHP C.C. Sabathia, Sunday's scheduled starter, is 7-1 with a 2.47 ERA in 10 career games against the Devil Rays.
  • Crawford has a hit in 17 of his past 18 games. He is 33-for-70 in August.
  • Cleveland is 8-1 against Tampa Bay this season.
  • Tampa Bay shortstop Ben Zobrist left in the third inning with a right oblique strain and will have an MRI exam on Sunday. Manager Joe Maddon said he is likely headed for the DL.
 
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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Jake Westbrook tosses seven innings of two-hit ball to help the Indians build a 1 1/2-game division lead.  (AP)
Jake Westbrook tosses seven innings of two-hit ball to help the Indians build a 1 1/2-game division lead. (AP)

Players of the Game
Cleveland

A. Cabrera
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 3
Cleveland

J. Westbrook
IP 7.0
H 2
ER 1
BB 2
K 4
 
Cleveland Indians
Kenny Lofton, LF4021002 .295
   a- Jason Michaels, PH-LF1000012 .269
Casey Blake, 3B5012023 .265
Grady Sizemore, CF5121011 .279
Victor Martinez, C5010001 .304
Travis Hafner, DH3210110 .254
   b- Chris Gomez, PH-DH1000011 .307
Ryan Garko, 1B4131001 .309
Jhonny Peralta, SS5120012 .275
Trot Nixon, RF3010014 .259
   c- Franklin Gutierrez, PH-RF0100100 .284
Asdrubal Cabrera, 2B4223002 .263
Totals40815828  
a-struck out for Lofton in the 8th
b-struck out for Hafner in the 9th
c-walked for Nixon in the 8th
Batting
2B - Ryan Garko 2 (23, Hammel, Switzer), Asdrubal Cabrera (2, Switzer)
HR - Grady Sizemore (21, Hammel), Asdrubal Cabrera (1, Hammel)
RBI - Kenny Lofton (26), Casey Blake 2 (58), Grady Sizemore (67), Ryan Garko (46), Asdrubal Cabrera 3 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Kenny Lofton (12), Casey Blake 2 (21), Ryan Garko (13), Asdrubal Cabrera 3 (3)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Peralta-Garko, Blake-A. Cabrera-Garko
Cleveland Indians
Jake Westbrook (W,4-7) 7211240 4.75
Jensen Lewis 1100020 2.70
Aaron Fultz 1000000 3.16
Pitches-Strikes - Jake Westbrook 91-56, Jensen Lewis 15-13, Aaron Fultz 9-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jake Westbrook 10-5, Aaron Fultz 1-2
Batters Faced - Jake Westbrook 23, Jensen Lewis 4, Aaron Fultz 3
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Akinori Iwamura, 3B4000010 .285
Carl Crawford, LF4010010 .316
B.J. Upton, CF3100101 .313
Carlos Pena, 1B3011010 .263
Delmon Young, RF3000011 .293
Brendan Harris, 2B3010000 .293
Jonny Gomes, DH2000111 .262
Dioner Navarro, C3000002 .204
Ben Zobrist, SS0000000 .155
   a- Josh Wilson, PH-SS3000012 .241
Totals2813126  
a-grounded into a double play for Zobrist in the 3rd
Batting
2B - Carlos Pena (23, Westbrook)
RBI - Carlos Pena (78)
2-OUT RBI - Carlos Pena (39)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Delmon Young 1
DP - Wilson-Harris-Pena
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Jason Hammel (L,1-3) 5844042 6.70
Juan Salas 1211010 3.42
Jon Switzer 1.1233210 18.00
Brian Stokes 1.2300020 7.24
HBP - Garko (by Juan Salas)
WP - Juan Salas (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Hammel 105-69, Juan Salas 25-16, Jon Switzer 29-15, Brian Stokes 38-25
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Hammel 4-7, Brian Stokes 2-0
Batters Faced - Jason Hammel 23, Juan Salas 6, Jon Switzer 7, Brian Stokes 7
Game Information
Attendance - 24397
Game Time - 3:03
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Tom Hallion, First Base - Mike Estabrook, Second Base - James Hoye, Third Base - Phil Cuzzi