The Cleveland Indians just keep on hitting.
Middle of the game production proved critical for the Indians on the way to their sixth straight win and fifth of the road trip, a 12-0 decision over the Baltimore Orioles in the first of a four-game set at Oriole Park at Camden Yards Monday night.
The Indians (37-31, 22-14 away from Cleveland) initiated the scoring with four runs in the fourth inning, and then, added four more in the fifth and another three in the sixth to pull out the lopsided victory in what was the 16th straight game in which Baltimore (34-35) allowed at least five runs, a first in Major League Baseball since the 1920s.
In the fourth inning, third baseman Jose Ramirez continued his hot hitting with a one-out double to the wall in right field off of Baltimore starting pitcher Dylan Bundy. Then, designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion doubled him home with a two-base hit to left field.
Outfielder Lonnie Chisenhall kept the doubles parade going when he smashed an RBI hit into right-center field, which plated Encarnacion.
After first baseman Carlos Santana drew a walk and catcher Yan Gomes was hit by the second pitch of the at-bat, center fielder Bradley Zimmer struck out swinging, but left fielder Austin Jackson doubled to the wall in left field and brought home both Chisenhall and Santana.
Following a 1-2-3 inning from starter Corey Kluber, the Indians’ offense went back to work in the top of the fifth inning.
Second baseman Jason Kipnis got the rally going when he belted a 1-2 pitch from Bundy out of the ballpark in right field.
Two batters later, Encarnacion drew a walk, and after a fly out from Chisenhall, Santana rocketed a two-run home run into the seats in left field, which put the Indians in front, 7-0. Then, after Gomes doubled to left-center field and Zimmer reached on an infield single, Jackson again had a run-producing hit, an RBI double to right field.
In the top of the sixth inning, the Indians had four straight batters reach base, and that led to another crooked number being put up on the scoreboard.
Kipnis drew a lead-off walk, and after Ramirez doubled to right field, Encarnacion was issued an intentional walk. Chisenhall followed with an RBI single to center field, and then, Santana lifted an RBI sacrifice fly to center, which brought in Ramirez. Encarnacion came around to score when Zimmer singled to right field.
The Indians added a 12th run when Encarnacion scored on an error off of a grounder from outfielder Daniel Robertson in the top of the ninth inning.
Fresh off of being named the American League Player of the Week, Ramirez went three for six at the plate with two runs scored and two doubles, which gave him 23 two-base hits on the season. During his seven-game hit streak, Ramirez has 10 doubles, including two each in three of those outings.
Additionally, Jackson went two for four with three RBI and one walk. Both of Jackson’s hits were doubles.
While the offense was rolling against the Orioles, Kluber put up a dominating performance on the mound, one that led to his sixth win and second complete game of the season. Kluber struck out the side to end the game in the ninth inning.
Kluber scattered three hits without allowing a run or walk over nine innings of work. He struck out 11 hitters and lowered his season earned run average to 3.58. Kluber was efficient in his work, throwing just 108 pitches, 80 of which went for strikes.