CLEVELAND -- Despite a three-run rally by the San Diego Padres in the ninth inning, the Cleveland Indians turned a solid start for right-handed pitcher Corey Kluber and a good offensive effort into an 8-6 win in the interleague matchup at Progressive Field Tuesday night.
The Indians are now 4-3 heading into tomorrow night's traditional doubleheader against the Padres to make up for Monday's rainout. The first game will be played at 12:05 and the second, 20 minutes immediately after the first.
The Indians could not get into an offensive rhythm in the first two innings, but they woke up in the bottom of the third and gave Kluber a 3-0 lead to work with, despite not getting a hit.
Catcher Yan Gomes led off the inning with a walk, and outfielder David Murphy followed with another free pass. Gomes advanced to third base on a passed ball charged to Padres catcher Yasmani Grandal.
Then, centerfielder Nyjer Morgan drove in Gomes when he hit a ground ball to second baseman Jedd Gyorko, who intended to turn a double play, or at worst, cut down Murphy, the lead runner, at second. However, Gyorko threw the ball past the reach of shortstop Everth Cabrera and allowed Murphy to go to third base, and Morgan to second, on the error.
Murphy scored on Nick Swisher's RBI groundout to first base, and Morgan came home on a sacrifice fly to left field for the final run of the inning.
Not to be outdone, the Padres had a two-run answer for the Indians in the top of the fourth inning.
San Diego first baseman Yonder Alonso led off the fourth with a base hit when he singled to left field, and advanced to third base on Grandal's double down the right-field line. Both players came around to score on Gyorko's RBI double to left field after right fielder Will Venable popped out to Carlos Santana at third base.
Despite the Padres' response runs, the Indians brought in another three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, and this time, they used two hits to score.
After left fielder Michael Brantley flied out to start the fourth, shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera reached on an error when Padres pitcher Tyson Ross dropped a flip-throw from Alonso at first base. With one on and one out instead of two outs, Indians designated hitter Lonnie Chisenhall roped a single to right field.
Two batters later, Murphy took a 3-1 pitch over the wall in right field for a 372-foot three-run home run, his first with the Indians.