Cleveland at Minnesota

W: J. Masterson (11-7) L: S. Diamond (5-9)
HR: CLE - J. Kipnis (15)   MIN - None

Indians 7, Twins 1 wire reports

MINNEAPOLIS -- Justin Masterson had no regrets about the pitch that cost him his chance at a no-hitter.

Masterson took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning, Michael Brantley hit a bases-loaded triple and the Cleveland Indians beat the Minnesota Twins 7-1 on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep.

Masterson (11-7) had faced the minimum through six, allowing only a hit batter, when Brian Dozier led off the seventh with a broken-bat blooper to center field that dunked in under the glove of a sliding Drew Stubbs for a double.

That not only ended Masterson's attempt at making history, it briefly halted what had been a quick, decisive trip through the Twins' lineup. Cleveland catcher Carlos Santana immediately went to the mound to check on the big right-hander.

"He said, `Maybe we should have started him off with a slider.' I said, `No, we wanted to challenge guys,'" Masterson said. "That's what we do. I don't care if we have no hits or 100 hits, you still have to challenge guys.

"Broken bat? That's what you want. It falls in, but in my mind I get so many balls put in play I'm like, something's going to happen. There's going to be a hit sometime. So let's just make sure when it does happen, we stay in our game and make sure it doesn't have a trickle-down effect," he added.

Besides, by then the Indians were leading 6-0.

"I thought what he did was good enough," manager Terry Francona said.

The Indians led 3-0 on Mike Aviles' sacrifice fly and two-run homer by Jason Kipnis when they loaded the bases with one out in the fifth on a walk to Kipnis and consecutive singles by Nick Swisher and Carlos Santana off starter Scott Diamond (5-9).

With right-hander Anthony Swarzak warming in the bullpen, acting manager Terry Steinbach -- in charge because Ron Gardenhire had the flu -- visited Diamond on the mound. Diamond got Mark Reynolds to pop out to first for the second out, but Brantley hit a liner to the wall in right-center for a standup triple that cleared the bases and ended Diamond's day.

The Indians hit Diamond hard even when making outs -- 11 of the balls they put in play were solid line drives. That included Kipnis' homer, which bounced off the top of the wall in left for his second opposite-field shot in two days.

"My stuff was really bad," Diamond said. "I think I tried to overdo some things, and that kind of led to what happened."

Diamond, the Twins' best starter last season as a rookie (12-9, 3.59 ERA), gave up six runs, five earned, on seven hits and three walks as the left-hander lost his third straight decision. He hasn't won since beating the Chicago White Sox on June 20, and his ERA rose to 5.53.

"It seemed like I's throw one pitch and not be able to come back with the next one," Diamond said. "It was just a matter of trying to focus and not overthink things. I just battled myself the whole time."

The Twins scored when Dozier came in from third on Joe Mauer's one-out grounder to second that was bobbled by Kipnis for an error, his second in two days. But the first-time All-Star also homered for the second time in two days.

"When he hits the ball the other way he's getting rewarded for it and it's creating a ton of confidence -- and it should," Francona said. "Right now he's keeping everything fair and hitting everything with authority, and that's a good recipe for success."

Masterson, who hadn't pitched since a no-decision against Toronto on July 10, finished the seventh before being pulled after 91 pitches for right-hander C.C. Lee. Masterson, also selected to his first All-Star team this year, was charged with an earned run on one hit and struck out eight in his first victory since June 30 against the White Sox. He lowered his ERA to 3.60 with his 13th quality start of the season.

Masterson plunked Aaron Hicks in the elbow in the third inning, but Hicks was thrown out attempting to steal for the second out and Pedro Florimon grounded out to end the inning.

That was as much as the Twins could muster against Masterson until the seventh, when Dozier looped the first pitch into shallow center.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
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Players of the Game

J. Kipnis
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1

J. Masterson
IP 7.0
H 1
ER 1
BB 0
K 8

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Cleveland Indians
Drew Stubbs, CF4010103 .243
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS5100002 .246
Jason Kipnis, 2B4223101 .303
Nick Swisher, DH5110002 .238
Carlos Santana, C3110100 .271
Mark Reynolds, 1B3100114 .213
Michael Brantley, LF4013000 .277
Ryan Raburn, RF4020011 .271
Mike Aviles, 3B3111001 .260
2B - Ryan Raburn (12, Diamond)
3B - Michael Brantley (2, Diamond)
HR - Jason Kipnis (15, Diamond)
SF - Mike Aviles (6)
RBI - Jason Kipnis 3 (62), Michael Brantley 3 (51), Mike Aviles (27)
2-OUT RBI - Michael Brantley 3 (23)
Team LOB - 6
DP - A. Cabrera-Reynolds
E - Jason Kipnis (8, Misplayed grounder)
Cleveland Indians
Justin Masterson (W,11-7) 7111080 3.60
Chen-Chang Lee 0.1000210 0.00
Cody Allen 0.2000000 2.18
Chris Perez 1100010 2.93
HBP - Hicks (by Justin Masterson)
Pitches-Strikes - Justin Masterson 93-67, Chen-Chang Lee 12-4, Cody Allen 3-2, Chris Perez 12-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Justin Masterson 10-3, Cody Allen 1-0, Chris Perez 2-0
Batters Faced - Justin Masterson 23, Chen-Chang Lee 3, Cody Allen 1, Chris Perez 4
Minnesota Twins
Brian Dozier, 2B4120010 .232
Chris Herrmann, C4000012 .353
Joe Mauer, DH4001021 .320
Justin Morneau, 1B4000001 .273
Ryan Doumit, RF3000021 .236
Trevor Plouffe, 3B2000020 .259
Clete Thomas, LF3000011 .227
Aaron Hicks, CF1000100 .191
Pedro Florimon, SS3000011 .231
2B - Brian Dozier 2 (17, Masterson)
RBI - Joe Mauer (34)
CS - Aaron Hicks (3, 2nd base by Masterson/Santana)
Team LOB - 3
DP - Florimon-Dozier-Morneau, Florimon-Dozier-Morneau-Dozier-Florimon-Morneau
E - Trevor Plouffe (7, Misplayed grounder)
Minnesota Twins
Scott Diamond (L,5-9) 4.2765301 5.53
Anthony Swarzak 1.1000000 3.47
Caleb Thielbar 1000000 0.79
Josh Roenicke 1000020 3.66
Ryan Pressly 1211100 3.22
Pitches-Strikes - Scott Diamond 91-55, Anthony Swarzak 13-9, Caleb Thielbar 13-7, Josh Roenicke 13-11, Ryan Pressly 17-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Diamond 5-10, Anthony Swarzak 2-2, Josh Roenicke 1-0, Ryan Pressly 2-0
Batters Faced - Scott Diamond 25, Anthony Swarzak 4, Caleb Thielbar 3, Josh Roenicke 3, Ryan Pressly 5
Game Information
Attendance - 31753
Game Time - 2:38
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Jerry Meals, First Base - Bruce Dreckman, Second Base - Chris Conroy, Third Base - Gary Darling