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Tribe sends Sox to foggy bottom


Tribe sends Sox to foggy bottom
Indians 9

Red Sox 8

The fog found Progressive Field on Tuesday night. It wasn't the thick, soupy fog that settled upon old Cleveland Municipal Stadium in 1986, causing the Indians game against Boston to be postponed and Red Sox pitcher "Oil Can" Boyd to say, "That's what you get for building a ballpark by the ocean."

Still, it was the same two teams, playing in the same town in the same dank and damp conditions.

Something strange just had to happen.

What unfolded was actually two games. The first was a three-inning wrestling match between Anthony Reyes and Brad Penny. It featured 14 runs and 16 hits and left Reyes and Penny battered and bruised.

The second one, the one that gave the night and the game to the Indians , 9-8, was a cat-and-mouse affair between the bullpens and Boston's leaky defense. Mark DeRosa, who had four hits, scored the winning run from second base with two out in the ninth inning when left-hander Javier Lopez dropped first baseman Kevin Youkilis' flip to first after Youkilis made a diving stop of a ball hit by Asdrubal Cabrera.

The victory ended Boston's 11-game winning streak. The Red Sox made three errors.

"It was a strong Baseball game," said manager Eric Wedge. "There was a lot of offense early and both bullpens were outstanding after that. You knew it was going to take a player to step up or a certain play to happen to decide it."

DeRosa opened the ninth with a single. Ben Francisco moved him to second with a sacrifice bunt, but Lopez (0-2) struck out Grady Sizemore before Cabrera sent his full-count grounder to first.

"That was a total team win," DeRosa said. "We really needed a game like that."

Kerry Wood (1-1), who lost Monday's series opener to Boston when he gave up a three-run homer to Jason Bay in the ninth, returned to the scene of the crime Tuesday and pitched the ninth for the victory.

The game lasted four hours and 19 minutes, making it the longest nine-inning game in Progressive Field history.

Wood, who needed 23 pitches to get the victory, gave up a leadoff single to Bay. He retired Mike Lowell on a fly ball to right, but Jason Varitek, with Bay running on the pitch, singled to right to put runners on first and third.

"At that point, it's game on," Wood said. "So I reached back and went at it."

He struck out Nick Green and retired Jacoby Ellsbury on a liner to second.

DeRosa, who entered the game in a 2-for-22 slump, pulled the Indians into a 8-8 tie in the seventh with a homer onto the left-field porch above the 19-foot wall off Takashi Saito. He started the game hitting .200 and ended it hitting .235.

"I was terrible the first 20 games," DeRosa said, "but I have a lot of confidence in myself. The most important thing is winning games."

Boston took an 8-7 lead with two out in the seventh. Joe Smith, after walking Bay to start the inning, retired the next two batters before Julio Lugo sent an inside pitch down the right-field line for an RBI double.

Tony Sipp relieved and struck out Ellsbury to end the inning. Tribe relievers Vinnie Chulk, Rafael Perez, Smith, Sipp and Wood allowed one run in seven innings.

The first three innings took 193 pitches, almost two hours and eight-dozen baseballs. When they ended, the score was tied, 7-7. Boston's Dustin Pedroia doubled and scored in the first, doubled and scored in the second and singled in the third. The game felt like it would last until Mother's Day.

Boston led, 7-3, entering the bottom of the third. The Indians tied it with four runs.

Francisco's three-run homer was the big hit of the inning and made it 7-7. Shin-Soo Choo started the rally with a one-out single. Penny hit Jhonny Peralta with a pitch and DeRosa sent a double-play ball to second, but Lugo dropped the relay to short for an error as Shoo scored. Francisco, who entered the game hitting .214 on the homestand, hit a 3-2 pitch down the left-field line for his second homer.

"[DeRosa] had a big game for us," Wedge said. "So did Benny."

Reyes, making his first start against Boston, allowed seven runs on nine hits in two innings. He had allowed nine runs in his first three starts.

Penny, making his first start against the Indians , allowed seven runs on seven hits in 2 2/3 innings. Three of the runs were unearned.

To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: phoynes@plaind.com, 216-999-5158


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 30, 2009

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