Happy hour: Indians edge Royals, celebrate AL Central title

CLEVELAND (AP) There was champagne chilling on ice for them, bottles and bottles of bubbly and beer.

But before the Cleveland Indians partied after winning a second straight AL Central title, there was work to be done to complete a week none of them will ever forget.

They could have taken the easy route and phoned it in.

Not this team.

''We want to win,'' Corey Kluber said.

Cleveland's ace pushed to the front of the Cy Young race with another dominant start and Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer as the Indians, who officially clinched the division crown a day earlier, kept on rolling with a 3-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals.

Kluber (17-4), who has lost once since July 4, allowed three singles in seven innings and has not given up a run in 22 straight. The right-hander set the tone on a day of celebration which began with the Indians standing together in front of their dugout to watch a flag rise beyond the center-field wall commemorating their latest division title.

The Indians were going to have a good time - win or lose - but they didn't want to disappoint another sellout crowd or fans captivated by their recent record 22-game winning streak.

''When we come out here and it's time to play, we want to win,'' Kluber said. ''Nobody in that clubhouse likes losing, so regardless of whether we clinched or not, we were going to come out and try to win the ballgame and here's what we're going to do from here on out.''

Encarnacion homered in the fourth off Danny Duffy (8-9) as the Indians improved to 33-5 since Aug. 11 despite getting only three hits.

The Royals closed to 3-2 in the eighth on a two-out, two-run single by Brandon Moss off Tyler Olson. Cody Allen finished the inning and then worked out of a two-on jam in the ninth for his 28th save.

As they left the field, the Indians were handed AL Central championship T-shirts, caps and swimming googles to put on before heading to their clubhouse. Moments later, champagne corks popped and the room was turned into a free-for-all of sudsy spray.

Last year, the Indians celebrated their division, playoff and AL Championship Series wins on the road. Being at home made this one more special.

''It never gets old,'' said pitcher Josh Tomlin, who has been with the Indians since 2010. ''This is why you play the game - to win. And to be able to celebrate victories like this or little milestones like this.''

Kluber could be on his way to a second Cy Young Award win, following 2014's. The right-hander is 10-1 in his last 10 starts. Despite missing nearly a month, he leads the league in wins (17), ERA (2.35), shutouts (3) and complete games (5).

In the major statistical categories, Kluber trails only Boston's Chris Sale, his closest competition for the pitching award, in strikeouts.

''He's a tough draw,'' Royals manager Ned Yost said. ''He's a premier guy. The year he won the Cy Young is the way he looks now. He's in the conversation again this year.''

CENTER OF ATTENTION

Jason Kipnis didn't embarrass himself in the outfield. He didn't do anything, really.

The Indians' two-time All-Star second baseman made his debut in center but didn't have a chance. He had been on the disabled list since Aug. 6 with a hamstring injury.

''It was good. I didn't touch a ball all day offensively or defensively,'' said Kipnis, who struck out twice. ''I had nothing, but it was fun. Obviously, I had some nerves.''

As soon as Kipnis left the game, two balls were immediately hit to center.

ANOTHER STREAK

The Indians have allowed four runs or less in 24 consecutive games, the longest such streak since the St. Louis Cardinals had a 25-game run in 1942-3.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Royals: C Salvador Perez (pulled side muscle) and OF Lorenzo Cain (rest) sat out but are expected to return Tuesday for the series opener in Toronto.

Indians: All-Star 2B Jose Ramirez (hamstring) was rested for the second day in a row as a precaution. ... Team president Chris Antonetti said there is still no clarity on whether OF Michael Brantley will return this season. He's been out since Aug. 9 with an ankle injury. ... Rookie OF Bradley Zimmer (broken hand) is keeping up with his conditioning and maintaining his arm strength after surgery. Zimmer had a plate and nine screws inserted into his hand, which he broke on a headfirst dive into first.

UP NEXT

Royals: Either RHP Ian Kennedy or Sam Gaviglio will start against the Blue Jays. Kennedy missed his last turn in the rotation with shoulder fatigue. Gaviglio has started twice since being claimed on waivers from Seattle.

Indians: RHP Mike Clevinger will look for his 11th win on Tuesday in the opener of a three-game series in Los Angeles. He was drafted by the Angels in 2011 and traded to Cleveland in 2014.

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123456789RHE
KC73-76
000000020272
CLE93-57
00020010X331
  • W: C. Kluber (17-4)L: D. Duffy (8-9)S: C. Allen (28)
  • HR: CLE - E. Encarnacion (36)
PLAYERS OF THE GAME
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
W. Merrifield 2B51100023.285.325.460.7841.0
M. Cabrera RF41100000.286.327.429.7562.0
E. Hosmer 1B40100012.323.389.507.8970.5
B. Moss DH40120031.210.286.447.7331.5
T. Gore PR-DH00000000.000.000.000.0002.0
C. Cuthbert 3B30100010.229.277.328.6050.5
a- M. Moustakas PH10000011.271.313.522.835-0.5
R. Torres 3B00000000.239.289.282.5710.0
P. Orlando CF40100012.171.194.186.3800.5
A. Escobar SS30000113.252.273.351.6240.5
A. Gordon LF30100004.209.286.307.5932.0
C. Gallagher C20000011.300.391.500.891-0.5
b- J. Bonifacio PH10000010.250.315.423.738-0.5
D. Butera C10000012.240.288.340.628-0.5
  • a-struck out for Cuthbert in the 8th
  • b-struck out for Gallagher in the 8th
HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
F. Lindor SS40000002.279.339.507.8470.0
A. Jackson LF41100010.306.372.482.8531.5
C. Santana 1B30000111.265.374.475.8490.5
E. Encarnacion DH31121112.253.377.500.8777.5
J. Bruce RF40000013.253.323.509.832-0.5
Y. Diaz 3B30000000.264.362.321.6830.0
E. Gonzalez 2B00000000.275.292.451.7430.0
J. Kipnis CF20000020.226.284.407.690-1.0
G. Allen CF01000000.200.286.360.6462.0
R. Perez C30100010.219.304.375.6790.5
G. Urshela 2B-3B30010011.219.265.266.5300.5
    BATTING
    • RBI - B. Moss 2 (49)
    • 2-Out RBI - B. Moss 2 (13)
    BATTING
    • HR - E. Encarnacion (36)
    • RBI - E. Encarnacion 2 (94), G. Urshela (13)
    BASERUNNING
    • SB - T. Gore (2)
    FIELDING
    • E - A. Escobar (15), W. Merrifield (11)
    FIELDING
    • E - C. Kluber
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    D. Duffy (L, 8-9)5.01210813.711.2112.0
    S. Alexander1.01001002.231.281.0
    P. Moylan0.21110003.721.10-2.0
    R. Buchter0.10000003.131.130.0
    J. Soria1.00001003.881.272.0
    PITCHERSIP
    D. Duffy (L, 8-9)5.0
    S. Alexander1.0
    P. Moylan0.2
    R. Buchter0.1
    J. Soria1.0
    PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
    C. Kluber (W, 17-4)7.03000902.350.8532.5
    B. Shaw (H, 23)0.12220103.341.23-3.5
    T. Olson (H, 7)0.11000000.000.96-1.0
    C. Allen (S, 28)1.11001302.471.169.5
    PITCHERSIP
    C. Kluber (W, 17-4)7.0
    B. Shaw (H, 23)0.1
    T. Olson (H, 7)0.1
    C. Allen (S, 28)1.1
    PITCHING
    • HBP - P. Moylan (4)
    • Pitches-Strikes - D. Duffy 62-47, S. Alexander 20-10, P. Moylan 19-12, R. Buchter 2-1, J. Soria 20-11
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - D. Duffy 6-3, S. Alexander 1-2, P. Moylan 2-0, J. Soria 2-1
    • Batters Faced - D. Duffy 18, S. Alexander 5, P. Moylan 4, R. Buchter, J. Soria 4
    PITCHING
    • HBP - C. Kluber (5)
    • Pitches-Strikes - C. Kluber 99-76, B. Shaw 13-9, T. Olson 9-6, C. Allen 26-16
    • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - C. Kluber 6-7, T. Olson 1-0
    • Batters Faced - C. Kluber 26, B. Shaw 3, T. Olson 2, C. Allen 6
    PLAYERS OF THE GAME
    123456789RHE
    KC73-76
    000000020272
    CLE93-57
    00020010X331
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    W. Merrifield 2B51100023.285.325.460.7841.0
    M. Cabrera RF41100000.286.327.429.7562.0
    E. Hosmer 1B40100012.323.389.507.8970.5
    B. Moss DH40120031.210.286.447.7331.5
    T. Gore PR-DH00000000.000.000.000.0002.0
    C. Cuthbert 3B30100010.229.277.328.6050.5
    a- M. Moustakas PH10000011.271.313.522.835-0.5
    R. Torres 3B00000000.239.289.282.5710.0
    P. Orlando CF40100012.171.194.186.3800.5
    A. Escobar SS30000113.252.273.351.6240.5
    A. Gordon LF30100004.209.286.307.5932.0
    C. Gallagher C20000011.300.391.500.891-0.5
    b- J. Bonifacio PH10000010.250.315.423.738-0.5
    D. Butera C10000012.240.288.340.628-0.5
    Total35272011319-----
    • a-struck out for Cuthbert in the 8th
    • b-struck out for Gallagher in the 8th
    HITTERSABRHRBIHRBBSOLOBAVGOBPSLGOPSFPTS
    F. Lindor SS40000002.279.339.507.8470.0
    A. Jackson LF41100010.306.372.482.8531.5
    C. Santana 1B30000111.265.374.475.8490.5
    E. Encarnacion DH31121112.253.377.500.8777.5
    J. Bruce RF40000013.253.323.509.832-0.5
    Y. Diaz 3B30000000.264.362.321.6830.0
    E. Gonzalez 2B00000000.275.292.451.7430.0
    J. Kipnis CF20000020.226.284.407.690-1.0
    G. Allen CF01000000.200.286.360.6462.0
    R. Perez C30100010.219.304.375.6790.5
    G. Urshela 2B-3B30010011.219.265.266.5300.5
    Total293331289-----
      BATTING
      • RBI - B. Moss 2 (49)
      • 2-Out RBI - B. Moss 2 (13)
      BATTING
      • HR - E. Encarnacion (36)
      • RBI - E. Encarnacion 2 (94), G. Urshela (13)
      BASERUNNING
      • SB - T. Gore (2)
      FIELDING
      • E - A. Escobar (15), W. Merrifield (11)
      FIELDING
      • E - C. Kluber
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      D. Duffy (L, 8-9)5.01210813.711.2112.0
      S. Alexander1.01001002.231.281.0
      P. Moylan0.21110003.721.10-2.0
      R. Buchter0.10000003.131.130.0
      J. Soria1.00001003.881.272.0
      Total8.0332281---
      PITCHERSIP
      D. Duffy (L, 8-9)5.0
      S. Alexander1.0
      P. Moylan0.2
      R. Buchter0.1
      J. Soria1.0
      Total8.0
      PITCHERSIPHRERBBSOHRERAWHIPFPTS
      C. Kluber (W, 17-4)7.03000902.350.8532.5
      B. Shaw (H, 23)0.12220103.341.23-3.5
      T. Olson (H, 7)0.11000000.000.96-1.0
      C. Allen (S, 28)1.11001302.471.169.5
      Total9.07221130---
      PITCHERSIP
      C. Kluber (W, 17-4)7.0
      B. Shaw (H, 23)0.1
      T. Olson (H, 7)0.1
      C. Allen (S, 28)1.1
      Total9.0
      PITCHING
      • HBP - P. Moylan (4)
      • Pitches-Strikes - D. Duffy 62-47, S. Alexander 20-10, P. Moylan 19-12, R. Buchter 2-1, J. Soria 20-11
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - D. Duffy 6-3, S. Alexander 1-2, P. Moylan 2-0, J. Soria 2-1
      • Batters Faced - D. Duffy 18, S. Alexander 5, P. Moylan 4, R. Buchter, J. Soria 4
      PITCHING
      • HBP - C. Kluber (5)
      • Pitches-Strikes - C. Kluber 99-76, B. Shaw 13-9, T. Olson 9-6, C. Allen 26-16
      • Ground Balls-Fly Balls - C. Kluber 6-7, T. Olson 1-0
      • Batters Faced - C. Kluber 26, B. Shaw 3, T. Olson 2, C. Allen 6
      • 8TH INNING
        Moss singled to center, Merrifield and Cabrera scored23
      • 7TH INNING
        Urshela reached on fielder's choice to shortstop, Allen scored, Perez out at second03
      • 4TH INNING
        Encarnacion homered to left, Jackson scored02
      • 9TH INNING
        • C. Allen Pitching:
        • P. Orlando: Strike looking, Orlando popped out to second
        • A. Escobar: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Escobar walked
        • A. Gordon: Foul, Strike looking, Gordon singled to shallow left, Escobar to second
        • D. Butera: Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Butera struck out swinging
        • W. Merrifield: Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Foul, Strike swinging, Merrifield struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 9th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 8TH INNING
        • Bryan Shaw relieved Corey Kluber
        • Erik Gonzalez at second
        • Jorge Bonifacio hit for Cam Gallagher
        • J. Bonifacio: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Bonifacio struck out swinging
        • W. Merrifield: Strike looking, Foul, Merrifield singled to right
        • M. Cabrera: Foul, Strike swinging, Ball, Cabrera reached on an infield single to first, Merrifield to second
        • Tyler Olson relieved Bryan Shaw
        • E. Hosmer: Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Hosmer grounded out to pitcher, Merrifield to third, Cabrera to second
        • B. Moss: Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Moss singled to center, Merrifield and Cabrera scored
        • Cody Allen relieved Tyler Olson
        • Mike Moustakas hit for Cheslor Cuthbert
        • Terrance Gore ran for Brandon Moss
        • M. Moustakas: Ball, Gore stole second, Strike looking, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Moustakas struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 8th (2 Runs, 3 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • Joakim Soria relieved Ryan Buchter
        • Ramon Torres at third
        • Drew Butera catching
        • A. Jackson: Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Jackson grounded out to third
        • C. Santana: Ball, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Foul, Santana lined out to pitcher
        • E. Encarnacion: Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Encarnacion walked
        • J. Bruce: Strike swinging, Ball, Bruce grounded out to first
        • End of the 8th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 7TH INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • E. Hosmer: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Foul, Ball, Ball, Hosmer singled to shallow left
        • B. Moss: Foul, Foul, Foul tip, Moss struck out on foul tip
        • C. Cuthbert: Foul, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Foul, Cuthbert singled to center, Hosmer to second
        • P. Orlando: Foul, Strike looking, Foul, Strike swinging, Orlando struck out swinging
        • A. Escobar: Strike swinging, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Escobar safe at first on Kluber fielding error, Hosmer to third, Cuthbert to second
        • A. Gordon: Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Gordon grounded out to pitcher
        • Middle of the 7th (0 Runs, 2 Hits, 1 Error)
        • Peter Moylan relieved Scott Alexander
        • Y. Diaz: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Foul, Diaz grounded out to second
        • G. Allen: Strike (foul tip), Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Allen hit by pitch
        • R. Perez: Pickoff attempt, Ball, Foul, Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Foul, Perez singled to deep left, Allen to third
        • G. Urshela: Urshela reached on fielder's choice to shortstop, Allen scored, Perez out at second
        • Ryan Buchter relieved Peter Moylan
        • F. Lindor: Ball, Lindor popped out to shortstop
        • End of the 7th (1 Run, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 6TH INNING
        • Greg Allen in center
        • C. Gallagher: Ball, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Gallagher flied out to right
        • W. Merrifield: Strike looking, Foul, Merrifield flied out to center
        • M. Cabrera: Ball, Cabrera lined out to center
        • Middle of the 6th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • Scott Alexander relieved Danny Duffy
        • F. Lindor: Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Lindor flied out to deep center
        • A. Jackson: Strike looking, Foul, Jackson singled to shallow left
        • C. Santana: Ball, Ball, Ball, Ball, Santana walked, Jackson to second
        • E. Encarnacion: Ball, Encarnacion flied out to right, Jackson to third
        • J. Bruce: Ball, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Foul, Bruce grounded out to first
        • End of the 6th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
      • 5TH INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • C. Cuthbert: Ball, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Cuthbert struck out swinging
        • P. Orlando: Strike swinging, Strike looking, Orlando singled to right
        • A. Escobar: Ball, Strike (foul tip), Foul, Strike swinging, Escobar struck out swinging
        • A. Gordon: Gordon flied out to left
        • Middle of the 5th (0 Runs, 1 Hit, 0 Errors)
        • D. Duffy Pitching:
        • J. Kipnis: Strike looking, Foul, Strike swinging, Kipnis struck out swinging
        • R. Perez: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Perez flied out to deep right
        • G. Urshela: Foul, Foul, Foul, Foul, Strike looking, Urshela struck out looking
        • End of the 5th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 4TH INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • M. Cabrera: Cabrera lined out to right
        • E. Hosmer: Strike looking, Hosmer grounded out to pitcher
        • B. Moss: Ball, Foul, Foul, Foul, Foul, Ball, Foul tip, Moss struck out on foul tip
        • Middle of the 4th (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • D. Duffy Pitching:
        • A. Jackson: Foul, Jackson safe at first on 2nd baseman Merrifield fielding error
        • C. Santana: Santana flied out to deep left
        • E. Encarnacion: Foul, Ball, Pickoff attempt, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Encarnacion homered to left, Jackson scored
        • J. Bruce: Ball, Strike swinging, Ball, Ball, Strike looking, Strike looking, Bruce struck out looking
        • Y. Diaz: Diaz grounded out to shortstop
        • End of the 4th (2 Runs, 1 Hit, 1 Error)
      • 3RD INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • A. Escobar: Strike looking, Escobar grounded out to shortstop
        • A. Gordon: Foul, Ball, Gordon hit by pitch
        • C. Gallagher: Strike looking, Strike swinging, Strike swinging, Gallagher struck out swinging
        • W. Merrifield: Pickoff attempt, Ball, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Pickoff attempt, Ball, Strike swinging, Merrifield struck out swinging
        • Middle of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • D. Duffy Pitching:
        • J. Kipnis: Foul, Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Kipnis struck out swinging
        • R. Perez: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Perez struck out looking
        • G. Urshela: Ball, Urshela safe at first on shortstop Escobar fielding error
        • F. Lindor: Lindor lined out to center
        • End of the 3rd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 1 Error)
      • 2ND INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • B. Moss: Strike looking, Foul, Ball, Strike swinging, Moss struck out swinging
        • C. Cuthbert: Strike looking, Cuthbert grounded out to third
        • P. Orlando: Ball, Strike swinging, Orlando fouled out to first
        • Middle of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • D. Duffy Pitching:
        • E. Encarnacion: Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Strike looking, Encarnacion struck out looking
        • J. Bruce: Strike swinging, Bruce grounded out to first
        • Y. Diaz: Strike looking, Strike looking, Diaz grounded out to second
        • End of the 2nd (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
      • 1ST INNING
        • C. Kluber Pitching:
        • W. Merrifield: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Foul, Merrifield grounded out to shortstop
        • M. Cabrera: Strike swinging, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Foul, Cabrera flied out to left
        • E. Hosmer: Foul, Foul, Ball, Foul, Ball, Strike looking, Hosmer struck out looking
        • Middle of the 1st (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)
        • D. Duffy Pitching:
        • F. Lindor: Strike looking, Ball, Foul, Lindor grounded out to pitcher
        • A. Jackson: Strike looking, Strike looking, Ball, Ball, Strike swinging, Jackson struck out swinging
        • C. Santana: Foul, Foul, Ball, Ball, Foul tip, Santana struck out on foul tip
        • End of the 1st (0 Runs, 0 Hits, 0 Errors)