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Indians fall to Twins in 16 innings

By PAUL HOYNES • Apr 19, 2018 at 1:57 AM

SAN JUAN, P.R. — The second and last chapter of the Puerto Rico Series between the Indians and Twins almost didn't take place because of an island-wide blackout a few hours before Wednesday night's game.

But the city of San Juan opened its power grid to Hiram Bithorn Stadium — the ballpark had reportedly been running on backup generators — and the game was played. But if city officials were in need of another power source they could have plugged into Carlos Carrasco and Jose Berrios. They brought the heat for seven innings before leaving with no score.

The pitching continued to dominate until the 16th inning when Ryan LaMarre's bases-loaded single off Josh Tomlin gave the Twins a 2-1 victory. Tomlin was the eighth reliever to work in the game.

The inning turned on an error by second baseman Jason Kipnis. After Eddie Rosario hit a leadoff single, Logan Morrison sent a double-play ball to Kipnis. Kipnis came up on the ball and it went under his glove as Rosario went to third.

The Indians intentionally walked Eduardo Escobar to load the bases to set up a force at any base. That's when LaMarre ended it with a single through the middle of a drawn-in infield.

In the 14th, Edwin Encarnacion, in a 2-for-32 skid, put the Indians ahead, 1-0, with a homer off Trevor Hildenberger. It looked like the Indians were sitting pretty, but Miguel Yano returned the favor in the bottom of the inning with a leadoff homer off Matt Belisle's first pitch to keep the game going.

The Tribe went 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 runners. The Twins went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position and stranded 14 runners.

"We got the lead, but it didn't last long," said Francona. "When a game gets to that point, it usually comes down to who makes a mistake and we did."

The Indians missed chance after chance in extra innings. They put the leadoff hitter on base five times between the 10th and 16th inning, but couldn't score.

In the 10th Puerto Rican native Roberto Perez reached second on a infield single and a throwing error by second baseman Brian Dozier. Rajai Davis pinch ran, but the Indians couldn't get him home.

Greg Allen, promoted as the 26th man for this series, couldn't bunt Davis to third and then struck out against lefty Zach Duke. Brandon Guyer grounded out to first to advance Davis for the second out of the inning.

Francisco Lindor, the hometown hero of Tuesday's win, was next to bat, but the Twins intentionally walked him. Kipnis followed with a drive to the gap in left center that center fielder Max Kepler tracked down for the third out.

Yonder Alonso started the 12th with a single and was replaced by pinch-runner Erik Gonzalez. He took second on a wild pitch, but Davis failed to advance him with a bunt before lining out to left.

Gonzalez reached third on a ground out by Yan Gomes, but Guyer grounded out to third.

Gomes started the 15th with a double and Guyer was hit in the batting helmet to put runners on first and second with no one out. Lindor, after failing to advance the runners with a bunt, struck out. Kipnis ended the inning by grounding into a double play.

Jose Ramirez walked to start the 16th, but was stranded at second base. It may have been the worse exhibition of how not to sacrifice bunt that the Indians have put on in a long while.

"We had some chances," said Francona. "We didn't execute bunts and it caught up to us."

The Twins could have ended it in the 12th. They had runners on second and third with one out, but Cody Allen struck out LaMarre and Robbie Grossman lined out to Lindor at short.

Carrasco entered the game having allowed one run in last 14 innings. The run came in the sixth inning in his last start when Detroit's Leonys Martin homered with two out.

The run now stands at one run in his last 21 innings.

Before the game Francona said Carrasco liked to pitch in the heat. Well, it was 80 degrees at game time and Carrasco pitched like he loved it.

"The atmosphere tonight was really good for both sides," said Carrasco. "Only one team is going to win, but we played good baseball tonight."

Dozier started the game with a single and stole second, but Carrasco retired the next three batters. He was in charge through the next six innings.

Over the last two seasons, the Twins have scored two runs in 26 2/3 innings against him. That's a 0.67 ERA.

The Twins put two runners on with one out in the fifth, but Carrasco struck out Jason Castro and Dozier.

The Indians threatened Berrios once over seven innings. He allowed just three hits, struck out five and didn't walk a batter.

Two of the hits came in the first inning. After that Berrios allowed one hit over the last six innings. He retired 16 straight.

The was nothing wrong with the Indians starting pitching in their trip to Puerto Rico. Corey Kluber and Carrasco combined to allow one run in 13 2/3 innings with 13 strikeouts and seven hits allowed.

What it means

The Indians are 7-2 in the AL Central so far this season.

The pitches

Berrios threw 84 pitches, 57 (68 percent) for strikes. Carrasco threw 98 pitches, 70 (71 percent) for strikes.

Pre-game ceremonies

Lindor was presented the 2016 Latin MVP award before the game. The award was presented by the Latin Sportswriters and Broadcasters Association.

The association waited to give him the award so they could present it to him in person in Puerto Rico.

Thanks for coming

The Indians and Twins drew a sellout crowd of 19,537 to Hiram Bithorn Stadium on Wednesday night. First pitch was at 7:10 p.m. with a temperature of 80 degrees.

Up next

The Indians have an off day on Thursday before opening a four-game series against the Orioles at Camden Yards on Friday night. Trevor Bauer (1-1, 2.25) will face the Orioles and right-hander Dylan Bundy (0-2, 1.40).

The rest of the Indians rotation for the series goes: Mike Clevinger (1-0, 2.70) on Ssturday, Kluber (2-1, 1.52) on Sunday and Carrasco on Monday.

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