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Yankees rally past Tribe

By PAUL HOYNES • Updated Jul 13, 2018 at 1:24 AM

CLEVELAND — If Corey Kluber and Luis Severino were auditioning to start the All-Star Game for the American League on Tuesday night in Washington, D.C., well, they fell flat.

It's not like they missed every high note, but they didn't kill it either.

But that's OK, instead of a pitcher's duel, a baseball game broke out Thursday night at Progressive Field and it was a good one until the Tribe's bullpen got involved. The Yankees won it, 7-4, as they scored two runs in the eighth and one in the ninth.

Severino, who leads the big leagues with 14 wins, was pulled after five innings and the score tied, 4-4.

The Indians, counting last year's ALDS, have lost seven straight to the Yankees. Kluber (12-5, 2.76) has taken his lumps in those seven games. He allowed six runs on eight hits in seven innings Thursday night.

Kluber, who struck out nine, came out the eighth with 100 pitches and the score still tied at 4-4. He immediately walked Didi Gregorius on four pitches before retiring Giancarlo Stanton. But Aaron Hicks doubled to the wall in center to score Gregorius for a 5-4 lead.

Oliver Perez relieved and Hicks stole third. The Indians challenged the safe call, but after a review the call on the field stood. It was a timely steal by Hicks as Greg Bird followed with a sacrifice fly for a 6-4 lead.

Brett Gardner made it 7-4 with a homer in the ninth. It was his second of the game and ninth of the season.

The Indians struck first, taking a 2-0 lead in the first. They have outscored their opponents this year, 71-45, in the first inning.

Francisco Lindor opened the inning with a double. Michael Brantley moved him to third with a grounder to second and Ramirez delivered him with a single to right for a 1-0 lead.

Ramirez tried to steal second, but was thrown out by Austin Romine. It cost the Indians a run because Edwin Encarnacion followed with a homer into the bleachers in left for a 2-0 lead. It was Encarnacion's 21st homer of the season.

The Yankees tied the game, 2-2, on a two-run, two-out homer by Gardner in the third. Miguel Andujar opened the inning with a double off the wall in left, but Kluber struck out the next two batters. Gardner hit a 2-2 pitch down the right field line to the tie the game.

The Indians came right back to reclaim the lead, 3-2, in the third. Brantley hit a long single off the wall in right, stole second and scored on Yonder Alonso's two-out single to left center off Severino.

But the home run continued to hound Kluber.

Gregorius, who hit two homers off Kluber in Game 5 of the ALDS, burned him again to start the fourth and tie the game at 3-3. After Stanton singled, Aaron Hicks put down a sacrifice bunt in front of the plate. Yan Gomes had plenty of time to throw to second and get Stanton, but his throw tailed away fron Lindor at the bag and ended up in the outfield.

Stanton went to third and scored on Bird's double off the wall in right center for a 4-3 lead. It looked like the game was going to tilt completely to the Yankees as Kluber walked Andujar to load the bases with no outs.

Kluber, however, struck out Romine and Neil Walker lined out to Alonso at first to start a double play.

Ramirez brought the Indians back, hitting a two-out homer in the fourth to make it a tie game once again at 4-4. It was Ramirez's 28th homer of the season, the most ever by an Indians player before the All-Star break.

The win went to David Robertson (6-3) and Aroldis Chapman earned his 25th save.

What it means

The Indians are 4-8 against the AL East this year and they have yet to play Boston and Tampa Bay.

The pitches

Severino threw 94 pitches, 63 (67 percent) for strikes. Kluber threw 114 pitches, 72 (63 percent) for strikes.

Thanks for coming

The Yankees and Indians drew 31,267 fans to Progressive Field on Thursday night. First pitch was at 7:10 with a temperature of 77 degrees.

Up next

Indians rookie right-hander Shane Bieber (4-1, 3.47) will face the Yankees and rookie right-hander Domingo German (2-4, 5.06) at 7:10 p.m. tonight. SportsTime Ohio and WLKR/FM 95.3 will carry the game.

Bieber, coming off his first big-league loss, will be facing the Yankees for the first time. He has 36 strikeouts in his first six big-league starts.

German will be making his 12 start and 18th appearance for the Yankees. German started against the Indians on May 6 and held them scoreless and hitless over six innings. The Yankees won, 7-4, but German was not involved in the decision.

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