Bieber gets first major league win as Indians beat Twins 4-1
By STEVE HERRICK, Associated Press
CLEVELAND (AP) — Shane Bieber was relaxing in the clubhouse at Triple-A Columbus on Saturday when he received an important message.
The rookie right-hander was needed in the big leagues.
Bieber capped a whirlwind few hours by pitching one-run ball into the sixth inning for his first major league win, helping the Cleveland Indians beat the Minnesota Twins 4-1 on Sunday.
He scattered 10 hits and struck out seven in 5 2/3 innings in his second career start. He was recalled earlier in the day when Carlos Carrasco went on the 10-day disabled list with a bruised right elbow.
“It was hectic,” said Bieber, who was told about his promotion Saturday evening. “They said go pack what you need and get on the road as soon as possible.”
Catcher Yan Gomes, whose three run-double in the third snapped a 1-all tie, was impressed with the composure a 23-year-old pitcher who began the season at Double-A Akron showed in unusual circumstances.
“The kid has some poise,” Gomes said. “He knows what he’s doing out there. That’s good to see from such a young guy.”
Tyler Naquin had an RBI single in the second. Cody Allen, the Indians’ third reliever, pitched the ninth for his 14th save in 15 opportunities.
Cleveland salvaged the finale of the three-game series and broke a five-game losing streak against Minnesota.
Twins right-hander Jake Odorizzi (3-4) allowed four runs in five innings. He is winless in seven starts since May 8.
Bieber was scheduled to start for Triple-A Columbus on Sunday, but that plan changed when Carrasco was injured in the second inning of Saturday’s 9-3 loss.
Carrasco’s early exit forced the Indians to use seven pitchers, including Adam Plutko, who was scheduled to start for Cleveland on Sunday. Bieber, instead of preparing to face Indianapolis in the International League, made the 2 1/2 drive from Columbus.
Bieber got an idea a change was coming when he and his teammates were watching the Indians game.
“We saw the bullpen was kind of thin and all of a sudden I see Plutko in the game,” he said. “Somebody across the clubhouse goes, ‘who’s supposed to start for us tomorrow?’ All these heads turn and they say, ‘you might be starting in the big leagues.’ “
Bieber scrambled to get his father and brother tickets for a red-eye flight from California so they could attend the game.
Eduardo Escobar’s first-inning double gave Minnesota the lead. The Twins were coming off wins over Corey Kluber, the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner, and Carrasco in the first two games of the series, but were held in check by Bieber (1-0).
Minnesota had runners on second and third with nobody out in the sixth, but Bieber struck out Mitch Garver and Ehre Adrianza. Oliver Perez struck out Joe Mauer to end the inning.
Escobar doubled in each of his first three at-bats, but Minnesota stranded 10 baserunners and was 1 for 10 with runners in scoring position.
“We had chances,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “We could have put the ball in play multiple times whether it was just a ground ball or fly ball that was going to get us a point or two, get us closer.”
Bieber made his major league debut at Minnesota on May 31, allowing four runs in 5 2/3 innings. He left with the Indians ahead 8-4, but the bullpen couldn’t hold onto the lead and Cleveland won 9-8.
Michael Brantley hit a leadoff double in the third, and Edwin Encarnacion and Lonnie Chisenhall drew one-out walks. Gomes’ double to the wall in left-center scored all three runners.
The Twins won’t get a breather when it comes to facing the top pitchers in the AL in their three-game series against Boston. Minnesota will go against former Cy Young winners Chris Sale, David Price and Rick Porcello, who are a combined 22-8 this season.
NEXT GAME ADDITION
Indians manager Terry Francona said first baseman Yonder Alonso will return to the team Monday. Alonso was placed on the family-medical-emergency list Friday.
Twins: OF Robbie Grossman was removed for a pinch runner in the sixth inning for what was announced as “heat illness.” Molitor said Grossman felt lightheaded and dizzy.
Indians: Carrasco will have additional tests Monday. … LHP Tyler Olson (strained back muscle) was placed on the 10-day DL. He’s 1-1 with a 7.27 ERA in 28 appearances.
Twins: RHP Jose Berrios (7-5, 3.51 ERA) will pitch Monday against Boston in the first of a three-game series.
Indians: RHP Trevor Bauer (5-5, 2.69 ERA) will go in the opener of a three-game series against the Chicago White Sox on Monday at Progressive Field.