Indians destroy Twins in series finale at Target Field
Cal Quantrill gave Cleveland another strong start, and Oscar Mercado, Bobby Bradley and Franmil Reyes homered to help ignite a lagging Indians lineup in a 12-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday night.
José Ramírez and Myles Straw each had three of Cleveland’s 14 hits, and Mercado and Bradley each drove in three runs. Ramírez had two RBIs to reach 90 for the season for the Indians, who crossed home plate twice their total in their previous five games combined. They had 18 hits in that span.
Miguel Sanó had the only two hits for Minnesota against Quantrill (6-3), including a three-run homer in the seventh inning that followed two walks. The second one to Max Kepler came right after Bradley dropped a foul pop-up in a swirling wind above first base for an error, making all the runs against Quantrill unearned.
Sanó doubled in the second inning, before Quantrill retired 13 straight batters. He finished 6 2/3 innings with three walks and four strikeouts.
Quantrill, the son of former workhorse reliever and 14-year major league veteran Paul Quantrill, has given Cleveland’s rotation a big lift since sliding in from his bullpen role following the shoulder injury to reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Shane Bieber.
Over 12 turns since the All-Star break, Quantrill has gone 5-1 with a 1.79 ERA and allowed only 51 hits in 75 1/3 innings.
Twins starter Griffin Jax (3-4) was done in by a four-run fifth. Cleveland hung a five-run seventh on the bullpen in the club’s final game in Minnesota as the Indians. They’ll change their nickname to the Guardians for 2022.
The Twins won the season series 11-8.
Jax failed to finish the fifth inning for the third time in his last five turns, though two of the five runs he allowed were unearned. In 69 innings this year, the rookie righty has allowed 19 home runs.
The 2016 third-round draft pick and first Air Force Academy graduate to appear in the major leagues still had a good week.
Jax was announced as the Bob Feller Act of Valor Award winner that’s been given annually since 2013 to an MLB player or coach with a commitment to military service or support. Feller was the first major league player to enlist after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. Jax maintains the rank of captain in the Air Force Reserves.
Indians: SS Amed Rosario was placed on the family medical emergency list so he could return to his native Dominican Republic to visit with an ill elderly relative. … Acting manager DeMarlo Hale said Bieber was “feeling pretty good” after his first rehab start for Triple-A Columbus. “We’ll try to slot him in to pitching in a big league game. That’s my wish,” Hale said.
Twins: RHP Joe Ryan reported no serious problems after being struck on the wrist by a batted ball on Tuesday. Manager Rocco Baldelli said he wasn’t sure yet if Ryan would take his next turn in the rotation. … RHP Kenta Maeda, having begun his rehab from Tommy John elbow surgery, was asked how he’s biding his time in Texas after the procedure: “It’s really difficult when you only have one arm to do everything in your daily life,” he said through his translator. “Maybe just binge watch on Netflix and obviously I’ve been keeping up with the Twins and how we’re doing.”
The Indians have an off day on Thursday, followed by a three-game series in New York. RHP Zach Plesac (10-5, 4.45 ERA) pitches on Friday, with the Yankees starter yet to be announced.
The Twins are also off on Thursday, after 14 games in the last 13 days. They start a three-game series at Toronto on Friday, when RHP Michael Pineda (6-8, 3.87 ERA) takes the mound. LHP Hyun Jin Ryu (13-8, 4.11 ERA) pitches for the Blue Jays.