Spring Training Game #29: Indians 10, Mariners 5
Smoke clears with Tribe victorious after slugfest
The bats were as scorching hot as the Arizona sun Saturday in Peoria as the Indians and Mariners combined for 15 runs off 34 hits with the Tribe doubling up Seattle 10-5. Scott Kazmir struggled for the first time in Cactus League play this spring, but isn’t expected to lose much ground in the race for the fifth starting rotation spot, which is expected to be decided between him and Carlos Carrasco this week.
Carrera LF (Lattimore LF)
Aviles 3B (Wolters 3B)
Phelps 1B (McGuiness 1B)
Giambi DH (Henry DH, Rodriguez DH)
Carson RF (Cid RF)
Marson C (Santos C)
Kazmir (W, 1-0)
Kazmir struggled out of the gate giving up four consecutive hits to start the game, which led to two runs being scored by the Mariners. He did settle down after that and didn’t surrender another run until the fifth inning when Seattle tagged him for three runs. The left-hander did have an explanation after the game, though, where he said he was focusing mainly on throwing fastballs and building up his arm strength, thus explaining why he gave up so many hits. Kazmir is now 1-0 with a 3.46 ERA this spring with his velocity averaging in the low 90s and topping out at 93 MPH.
The Indians had no trouble getting on base either as they piled up 18 hits over the course of the game. The first of the scoring, though, came off the bats off Cord Phelps and Jason Giambi as they jacked back-to-back home runs off Mariners starter Blake Beavan scoring three runs in the top of the third. Phelps is now hitting .383 with three home runs and seven RBI this spring. Giambi now has three home runs and five RBI.
When the Indians were down 5-4 in the top of the sixth, they delivered the knockout punch. Lou Marson and Francisco Lindor led off with singles off Beavan. Then the rest of the young pups got things going as Jose Ramirez and Tyler Naquin clubbed back-to-back doubles to plate three runs. After a coaching visit to the mound, RBI singles by Ezequiel Carrera, Tony Wolters and minor league camp visitor Jordan Henry regained the lead for the Tribe and put them up 9-5. Mike Aviles scored on a wild pitch in the third and Omir Santos scored on an RBI triple from Lindor in the top of the ninth to round out the scoring for the Tribe.
It was a tough day physically as both teams had players exit with injuries. Mariners catcher Jesus Montero exited in the second after being beaned in the side of the head by the end of Lindor’s bat on the backswing. Montero was carted to the clubhouse with a large welt protruding from the side of his forehead where the bat left its mark. Michael Dowd took over for him behind the plate.
On the Indians side, right fielder Matt Carson had to be taken out of the game after losing his balance while tracking down a fly ball off the bat of Kyle Seager and falling hard face-first into the wall. Carson left with a laceration over his eye and a strained neck, which could sideline him for the next several days.
The Tribe bullpen came out in the sixth inning and did what they’ve been doing as of late, which has been shutting down the opposition. Vinnie Pestano, Matt Capps and David Huff combined for four shutout innings with three hits and a walk allowed and four strikeouts. Pestano is already slated to return to the bullpen as the setup man this season, but Huff and Capps are currently in limbo as Capps is pondering whether he should pursue opportunities elsewhere or accept a minor league assignment with the Indians. Huff on the other hand, is battling for a bullpen spot, but has a lot to compete with in Nick Hagadone, Bryan Shaw and Matt Albers.
Quick Game Facts:
- The trio of Lindor, Ramirez and Naquin had a very productive day at the plate going 6-for-14 combined with two doubles, a triple, four RBI and three runs scored. The three young players represent three of the Indians’ top 10 prospects in their farm system.
- Cleveland’s 10-5 win over the Mariners marks the first ever Tribe victory over Seattle in Cactus League play. The Indians had an 0-6-2 record against the Mariners before Saturday’s game.
- Bench hopeful Ezequiel Carrera stole two bases in Saturday’s game bringing his 2013 spring training total to 11, which leads all of the Cactus League.
- For the first six consecutive innings of the game, Indians hitters led off with singles; however, only two of those leadoff base runners came around to score in that time frame.
- The Indians scored 10 runs on 18 base hits Saturday to win without a single one of their starting players in the lineup.
Up Next: Cubs vs. Indians @ Goodyear Ballpark on Sunday. First pitch is at 4:05 ET.
Ubaldo Jimenez will take to the hill in Goodyear riding a streak of three straight quality starts. The right-hander is 2-0 with a 4.91 ERA this spring as he aims to bounce back to his ace form in 2013. Opposing him will be left-hander Chris Rusin and the Chicago Cubs. Cleveland is 2-0 against the Cubbies this spring with a total of 22 runs scored in two matchups.
Jake Dungan is a communications student at Stark State College and an intern with the Akron RubberDucks. Follow him on Twitter @MajorLeagueJake.
Carrera is really trying to show the team his speed would be a better asset off the bench than Giambi and his leadership. I think they have already choosen Giambi. Some team would be wise to scope up Carrera as their 4th outifield guy.
Would you bring Dice K up and pay him 1 million then send him back down just to have control over him the entire season. It would be a nice little insurance plan but I know things like that don't happen.
In regards to the "are all middle of the diamond player". Exactly, its so much easier to move middle of the diamond playrs to the corners then corner players to the middle of the diamond. They also bring a better haul in a trade most of the time. Good drafting.