Cleveland at Minnesota

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Cleveland (51-50)001000000151
Minnesota (46-54) «00101100x381

Swarzak comes through in fill-in start to lead Twins

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Anthony Swarzak, for an afternoon at least, was a starter again.

He pitched like he didn't want to go back to the bullpen. The rest of the Minnesota relievers picked him up with a strong performance in his honor.

Swarzak pitched five sharp innings in a short-notice start, Oswaldo Arcia homered and the Twins beat the Cleveland Indians 3-1 Wednesday.

''I missed that. That was fun,'' Swarzak said.

Danny Santana scored after two of his three hits for the Twins, and five relief pitchers totaled six strikeouts over four scoreless innings. Glen Perkins finished up in the ninth for his 24th save in 27 tries.

When Kyle Gibson developed a sore back the day before, Swarzak (2-0) was summoned from the bullpen to fill in. He threw 75 pitches, 15 over the limit the Twins had in mind, but the right-hander allowed just two hits and one walk while striking out three. He was only in trouble once. The Twins were worried about his stamina, but he still hit 93 mph on the radar in the fifth.

''When you're in as good a shape as him, and the hard work that he does in that training room and everywhere else in running and throwing, he can handle those things,'' manager Ron Gardenhire said.

Swarzak has made 29 career starts dating back to 2009, but this was his first since Oct. 2, 2012. Such a surprise assignment can be a challenge for a pitcher, less than 14 hours after finding out, but that can also work against an opponent that hasn't fully prepared to face him.

''Our hope would be to get the pitch counts up, give him a couple long innings and make them use their bullpen. We couldn't,'' Indians manager Terry Francona said.

Four of Swarzazk's five innings were perfect.

''I felt like I might've had a little bit more in the tank,'' Swarzak said. ''I've always been a guy when I've started to get stronger as the outing goes forward and have the best stuff in the last inning I've thrown.

In the third, Jose Ramirez poked a perfectly placed double down the third base line to drive in a run. Shortstop Eduardo Nunez made a slick diving stab of Michael Brantley's sharp line drive up the middle, ending the inning with runners at second and third.

''Play of the game, hands down. That's why we won,'' Swarzak said.

How the Twins needed this performance by Swarzak. They gave up 14 runs over the first three innings combined during the first five games of his homestand, losing four of those. After a recent return to respectability, the rotation has begun to backslide toward the level of those rough last three seasons.

Trevor Bauer (4-5) struck out seven in six innings, but he lost for the first time in five July starts.

Bauer gave up a triple to Santana in the third, followed by an RBI single to Sam Fuld. In the fifth, Brian Dozier drove in Santana with double. Then in the sixth, Arcia hit his two-out solo shot into the right field seats.

''It was a fastball, exactly where I wanted to put it,'' Bauer said.

That was Arcia's second homer in his last 35 games.

The Indians have only one error over their last 10 games. Their hitting with runners in scoring position has been productive lately. Their starting pitching has, too. But they still lost two of three to the Twins, after winning a four-game series at division-leading Detroit to close in on the Tigers in the AL Central race.

Notes

The Twins plan to slide Gibson back into the rotation Saturday if he's ready. ''That's just a hope. You never know with a back,'' manager Ron Gardenhire said. ... The Indians move on to Kansas City Thursday for a four-game series, with RH Corey Kluber (10-6, 2.95 ERA) starting opposite LH Danny Duffy (5-10, 2.66 ERA) of the Royals. Kluber has allowed only 10 earned runs over his last six turns, totaling 44 strikeouts and only seven walks in 43-plus innings. ... The Twins begin a four-game series here Thursday against Chicago, with RH Phil Hughes (10-6, 4.05 ERA) pitching and RH Hector Noesi (4-7, 5.21 ERA) taking the mound for the White Sox. Hughes and Kevin Correia are the only Twins who have made every start this season. ... Bauer finished six innings for the 11th time in 14 starts this season.

 
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Anthony Swarzak subs for Kyle Gibson and throws five innings of one-run ball for Minnesota.  (USATSI)
Anthony Swarzak subs for Kyle Gibson and throws five innings of one-run ball for Minnesota. (USATSI)

Players of the Game
Cleveland

T. Bauer
IP 6.0
H 6
ER 3
BB 2
K 7
Minnesota

D. Santana
AB 3
R 2
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
 

Related Video

Cleveland Indians
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLG
Jason Kipnis, 2B4010003.254.335.361
Jose Ramirez, SS3021000.143.143.179
Michael Brantley, CF4000005.321.382.512
Carlos Santana, 1B4010011.215.352.399
Lonnie Chisenhall, 3B3000010.317.388.489
   a-Mike Aviles, PH1000001.259.276.343
Nick Swisher, DH4000031.212.287.349
David Murphy, RF3110000.242.304.358
   b-Yan Gomes, PH1000011.275.321.462
Roberto Perez, C2000020.308.357.615
Chris Dickerson, LF1000210.364.447.576
Trevor Bauer, P0000000.000.000.000
   Carlos Carrasco, P0000000.000.000.000
   Nick Hagadone, P0000000.000.000.000
Totals3015129    
a-flied out for Chisenhall in the 9th
b-struck out for Murphy in the 9th
Batting
2B - Jose Ramirez (1, Swarzak)
SH - Jose Ramirez (1), Roberto Perez (1)
RBI - Jose Ramirez (2)
2-OUT RBI - Jose Ramirez (1)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
E - Chris Dickerson (1, Misplayed grounder)
Cleveland Indians
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Trevor Bauer (L,4-5) 6633271 3.93
Carlos Carrasco 1200110 3.55
Nick Hagadone 1000000 3.00
WP - Trevor Bauer (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Trevor Bauer 99-61, Carlos Carrasco 13-8, Nick Hagadone 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Trevor Bauer 2-8, Nick Hagadone 1-2
Batters Faced - Trevor Bauer 25, Carlos Carrasco 5, Nick Hagadone 3
Minnesota Twins
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLG
Sam Fuld, LF2011211.266.356.379
Brian Dozier, 2B4011023.239.336.434
Trevor Plouffe, 3B4010012.243.315.411
Kendrys Morales, DH4000021.234.259.325
Chris Colabello, 1B2000100.236.287.407
   Chris Parmelee, 1B1000001.264.299.385
Oswaldo Arcia, RF4121012.222.310.378
Eduardo Nunez, SS3000002.265.291.398
Eric Fryer, C3000010.154.214.154
Danny Santana, CF3230000.325.362.448
Anthony Swarzak, P0000000.000.000.000
   Caleb Thielbar, P0000000.000.000.000
   Jared Burton, P0000000.000.000.000
   Casey Fien, P0000000.000.000.000
   Brian Duensing, P0000000.000.000.000
   Glen Perkins, P0000000.000.000.000
Totals3038338    
Batting
2B - Brian Dozier (18, Bauer)
3B - Danny Santana (1, Bauer)
HR - Oswaldo Arcia (6, Bauer)
RBI - Sam Fuld (19), Brian Dozier (47), Oswaldo Arcia (19)
2-OUT RBI - Brian Dozier (8), Oswaldo Arcia (11)
CS - Sam Fuld (3, 2nd base by Bauer/Perez), Danny Santana (2, 2nd base by Carrasco/Perez)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
E - Brian Dozier (8, Throwing)
Minnesota Twins
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Anthony Swarzak (W,2-0) 5211130 4.10
Caleb Thielbar (H,6) 1100010 2.73
Jared Burton (H,11) 1000020 4.43
Casey Fien (H,16) 0.2100110 2.30
Brian Duensing (H,5) 0.1000000 2.33
Glen Perkins (S,24) 1100020 2.76
Pitches-Strikes - Anthony Swarzak 74-51, Caleb Thielbar 12-8, Jared Burton 10-7, Casey Fien 17-10, Brian Duensing 4-2, Glen Perkins 13-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Anthony Swarzak 3-9, Caleb Thielbar 2-0, Jared Burton 1-0
Batters Faced - Anthony Swarzak 18, Caleb Thielbar 4, Jared Burton 3, Casey Fien 4, Brian Duensing 1, Glen Perkins 4
Game Information
Attendance - 34608
Game Time - 2:46
Temperature - 78
Umpires - Home - Will Little, First Base - Brian O'Nora, Second Base - Jim Wolf, Third Base - D.J. Reyburn