(AP) — One day after Cleveland Indians closer Cody Allen gave up the game-winning hit in the bottom of the ninth inning, he found himself in another high leverage situation against the Minnesota Twins’ best hitter. This time Allen buckled down and made sure the Indians wouldn’t let the Twins walk them off for the third straight night. Allen won a long battle with Joe Mauer to strand the tying run at second base and Francisco Lindor drove in three runs to help the Indians beat the Twins 6-5 on Wednesday night.
”You want to stop riding this roller coaster I’ve been on for the last few weeks, but it’s a good feeling, it’s a step in the right direction to win the battle with Mauer,” said Allen, who improved to 7 for 7 in save chances. ”He put a really good swing on it, but just to get a win and come out of here.”
Carlos Santana had three hits and the Indians spoiled the highly anticipated big league debut of prized pitching prospect Jose Berrios.
Berrios (0-1) gave up five runs and six hits with five strikeouts in four innings. Byung Ho Park hit his fifth homer of the season and Danny Santana had three hits and an RBI for Minnesota.
Zach McAllister was the victim of one of Minnesota’s walk-off wins when he gave up a towering home run to Oswaldo Arcia in the ninth inning on Monday. But he came through in a huge spot for the Indians on Wednesday night, striking out Park with the bases loaded to end the seventh inning.
”That was kind of in my mind a little bit,” Allen said of the loss to Miguel Sano the previous night. ”But I felt like I was executing a little better tonight, had my good stuff and was showing it.”
Michael Brantley got his first hit of the season for the Indians after missing the first 17 games while recovering from shoulder surgery. Josh Tomlin (3-0) gave up five runs – four earned – and six hits in 5 1-3 innings for Cleveland.
The start of the game was delayed 35 minutes by rain, and Berrios took the mound with the wind swirling and a chilly 44 degrees.
Lindor had a two-run double in the third inning and Jason Kipnis chased Berrios with an RBI-double in Cleveland’s four-run fifth inning.
”Jose was probably a little amped up,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. ”I don’t think we saw him at his best. He competed fairly well. Command wasn’t particularly sharp.”