CLEVELAND -- With one swing of the bat, third baseman Adrian Beltre broke a tie score in the top of the ninth inning and buoyed the Texas Rangers’ efforts in a 2-1 win over the Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field Tuesday night.
On the first pitch from Indians closer Cody Allen, Beltre took a powerful uppercut swing and launched the offering into the bleacher seats in left field for his fifth round-tripper of the season and the game-winning run in a contest that was in stark contrast to the slugfest that ensued between the teams Monday night.
With the win, the Rangers improved to 39-38 on the season and 17-21 away from Globe Life Park in Arlington, while the Indians fell to 40-36 overall and just 16-21 in front of the home fans at Progressive Field.
The loss spoiled an otherwise strong performance from Cleveland’s pitching staff, as starter Mike Clevinger allowed just two hits, two walks and one earned run over six innings of work against the Rangers. Clevinger struck out nine Rangers hitters and found the strike zone with 61 of his 102 pitches.
Out of the bullpen, the seventh-eighth-ninth combination of Bryan Shaw, Andrew Miller and Allen struck out a combined seven hitters over three innings of work. Shaw and Allen, who dropped to 0-4 on the season, each had two strikeouts, while Miller struck out three of the four batters he faced.
The Indians broke through for the game’s first run in the bottom of the second inning.
After taking four straight throws out of the strike zone for a walk following a first-pitch strike, third baseman Jose Ramirez stole second base on a 2-2 pitch from Rangers starter Tyson Ross with right fielder Lonnie Chisenhall at the plate.
Chisenhall followed the stolen base with an RBI single to center field, but the rally short-circuited when first baseman Carlos Santana grounded into a 4-6-3 double play and center fielder Bradley Zimmer flied out to his counterpart to end the threat.
The Rangers drew even in the top of the fifth inning.
After former Indians slugger, and current Rangers designated hitter, Mike Napoli and second baseman Rougned Odor struck out and grounded out, respectively, catcher Robinson Chirinos belted a 2-1 slider from Clevinger into the seats in left field for the game-tying run.