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Cleveland at Kansas City

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Cleveland (16-26) «0020002408162
Kansas City (21-20)201000000371

Royals bullpen blows it for Greinke in Indians victory

CBSSports.com wire reports
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- In a battle of bullpens, fate favored the guys with all the blown saves.

Cleveland's Luis Vizcaino, Matt Herges and Rafael Betancourt kept Kansas City at bay Thursday after Royals ace Zack Greinke departed with a one-run lead. Victor Martinez had three RBI and the Indians pulled away for an 8-3 victory.

"We faced a pitcher who's at the top of his game every time out and we wore him out, I think," said Cleveland starter Carl Pavano (4-4), who matched his more celebrated opponent nearly pitch for pitch. "It looked like he was kind of laboring and we got him out of there and were able to get to the bullpen."

Greinke's record stayed at 7-1 with his first no-decision in nine starts. He went six innings, gave up a season-high eight hits and left with a 3-2 edge. His major league-leading ERA crept up to 0.82 from 0.60.

The Indians tied it 2-all with two run in the third and loaded the bases before Greinke escaped by striking out Mark DeRosa and Ben Francisco.

  Knobler: Cleveland would deal DeRosa for 'pen help | Indians: Perfect game by Double-A pitcher

"I just wasn't real crisp. It was really stupid pitching for that whole inning probably," Greinke said. "I started throwing two-seamers to get ground balls and it's not really how I pitch. I got behind on everyone because I was throwing the two-seamer. It was just stupid, really stupid."

Asdrubal Cabrera had four hits and two RBI as Cleveland beat the same opponent two times in a row for the first time this season. It was the first time they beat the same team two straight.

Pavano went six innings, giving up three runs and six hits while striking out eight.

"We made [Greinke] work hard and they made Carl work hard," Cleveland manager Eric Wedge said.

Coming in, the Cleveland bullpen was a mess, with nine blown saves in 17 opportunities. Closer Kerry Wood, after working the past two nights, was not available.

"It was left up to the bullpen and our guys really stepped up. It should be a big boost for them," said Wedge.

Betancourt came in with the bases loaded and none out in the ninth and got a popup and a double-play grounder for his first save in three chances.

Shin-Soo Choo had three hits and two RBI. He said he thought Greinke's fastball was better than the last time he faced him.

"It was still 96-97 [mph] but everything was moving," he said. "There was no straight fastball today."

Greinke handed a 3-2 lead to Horacio Ramirez (0-2) starting the seventh and the left-hander immediately got in trouble, giving up an RBI single to Choo and a run-scoring double to Jhonny Peralta.

In their last six innings, Royals relievers who were expected to be a strength this year have allowed 10 runs on 14 hits and three walks.

"You can have all the good arms you want, but if you don't locate and command pitches you're not going to get quality major league hitters out," Royals manager Trey Hillman said.

The Indians added four off Juan Cruz in the eighth on back-to-back RBI doubles by Cabrera and Luis Valbuena and a two-run double by Martinez.

Martinez went 2-for-5 and kept his major league-leading average at .400.

Billy Butler's RBI double and Jose Guillen's run-scoring single staked Greinke to a 2-0 lead in the first. Grady Sizemore ended an 0-for-17 skid with a single in the Indians third and Martinez and Choo followed with RBI singles.

Notes

  • Going back to last Sept. 2, Greinke has not allowed a home run in 94 innings. One of only two pitchers since the early 1900s to post at least seven wins with an ERA of 0.60 or less, Greinke has allowed six earned runs in 66 innings.
  • The 16 hits were the most the Royals have allowed this year.
  • The Indians begin interleague play this weekend at Cincinnati while the Royals travel across the state to meet the St. Louis Cardinals.
  • Indians CF Francisco made an outstanding diving catch on Alberto Callaspo's sinking liner leading off the fifth.
  • 2B Valbuena had gone 24 games at shortstop without committing his first major league error until he misplayed Mike Aviles' grounder in the seventh.
 
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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Zack Greinke, who exits with a 3-2 lead, has his ERA rise to 0.82 by yielding two runs over six innings.  (AP)
Zack Greinke, who exits with a 3-2 lead, has his ERA rise to 0.82 by yielding two runs over six innings. (AP)

Players of the Game
Cleveland

A. Cabrera
AB 5
R 2
H 4
HR 0
RBI 2
Cleveland

C. Pavano
IP 6.0
H 6
ER 3
BB 1
K 8
 
Cleveland Indians
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS5242001 .327
Grady Sizemore, DH1210200 .213
Victor Martinez, 1B5023024 .400
Shin-Soo Choo, RF5132012 .303
Jhonny Peralta, 3B4011112 .264
Mark DeRosa, LF5010024 .253
Ben Francisco, CF5010024 .248
Kelly Shoppach, C5110022 .225
Luis Valbuena, 2B5220031 .179
Totals408168313  
Batting
2B - Asdrubal Cabrera (12, Cruz), Victor Martinez (14, Mahay), Jhonny Peralta (9, Wright), Luis Valbuena (3, Cruz)
3B - Ben Francisco (1, Greinke)
SH - Grady Sizemore 2 (2)
RBI - Asdrubal Cabrera 2 (22), Victor Martinez 3 (30), Shin-Soo Choo 2 (26), Jhonny Peralta (18)
2-OUT RBI - Shin-Soo Choo (11), Jhonny Peralta (6)
SB - Asdrubal Cabrera (7, 2nd base off Greinke/Olivo)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - A. Cabrera-Valbuena-Martinez
E - Victor Martinez (2, Dropped line drive), Luis Valbuena (1, Misplayed grounder)
Cleveland Indians
Carl Pavano (W,4-4) 6633180 6.10
Luis Vizcaino (H,2) 1000010 1.93
Matt Herges 1100200 1.86
Rafael Betancourt (S,1) 1000000 4.57
HBP - Guillen (by Carl Pavano)
WP - Carl Pavano (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Carl Pavano 101-65, Luis Vizcaino 19-15, Matt Herges 28-15, Rafael Betancourt 4-3
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Carl Pavano 4-5, Luis Vizcaino 1-2, Matt Herges 1-3, Rafael Betancourt 1-1
Batters Faced - Carl Pavano 25, Luis Vizcaino 4, Matt Herges 7, Rafael Betancourt 2
Kansas City Royals
David DeJesus, LF5110014 .240
Alberto Callaspo, 2B5110003 .333
Billy Butler, 1B4111021 .283
Mike Jacobs, DH4011021 .261
Jose Guillen, RF3011001 .299
Mark Teahen, 3B3000102 .279
Miguel Olivo, C3000023 .218
   a- John Buck, PH0000100 .230
Mitch Maier, CF4020010 .294
Mike Aviles, SS3000010 .191
    Willie Bloomquist, PR-SS0000100 .320
Totals3437339  
a-walked for Olivo in the 9th
Batting
2B - Alberto Callaspo (16, Pavano), Billy Butler (13, Pavano)
RBI - Billy Butler (20), Mike Jacobs (24), Jose Guillen (19)
2-OUT RBI - Mike Jacobs (7), Jose Guillen (10)
SB - David DeJesus (1, 2nd base off Pavano/Shoppach), Willie Bloomquist (8, 2nd base off Vizcaino/Shoppach)
CS - Mitch Maier (1, 2nd base by Pavano/Shoppach)
Team LOB - 8
Fielding
DP - Aviles-Callaspo-Butler
PB - Miguel Olivo (4)
E - Miguel Olivo (1, Throwing)
Kansas City Royals
Zack Greinke 6822280 0.82
Horacio Ramirez (BS,1; L,0-2) 0.2222000 6.61
Jamey Wright 0.1100010 2.42
Juan Cruz 0.1344100 3.32
Ron Mahay 0.2100010 3.21
Kyle Farnsworth 1100030 4.11
Pitches-Strikes - Zack Greinke 103-63, Horacio Ramirez 15-10, Jamey Wright 8-5, Juan Cruz 25-16, Ron Mahay 9-6, Kyle Farnsworth 12-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Zack Greinke 5-4, Horacio Ramirez 2-0, Juan Cruz 1-0, Ron Mahay 1-0
Batters Faced - Zack Greinke 27, Horacio Ramirez 4, Jamey Wright 2, Juan Cruz 5, Ron Mahay 3, Kyle Farnsworth 4
Game Information
Attendance - 23095
Game Time - 3:33
Temperature - 77
Umpires - Home - Jim Joyce, First Base - Brian Runge, Second Base - Bill Miller, Third Base - Derryl Cousins