CLEVELAND-- Coming into Saturday's contest, the Indians' previous five games against Seattle in 2018 all came down to one-run.
On Saturday, however, the Mariners worked the Tribe pitching staff for the 12-4 win. It's the second time this homestand the Indians have given up double-digit runs.
Seattle is an aggressive offensive team, and that was something that manager Terry Francona said the Tribe knew coming into the game. As a result, the Mariners made Cleveland pay for mistakes early in the count.
"One of the more aggressive in the league," Francona said. "We knew coming in, when they see it, they’re swinging. You make a mistake, they can do some damage.”
The Indians will try to even the series to two games apiece tomorrow afternoon. Until then, here are three takeaways from the loss.
1. Rough outing for Carrasco
Carlos Carrasco (4-1, 3.08) lasted only three innings for the Tribe in his first loss of the year. He gave up five hits and five runs, four of which were earned while striking out four. Two of the hits were home runs.
From the very beginning of the game Carrasco had command problems. He gave up a two-run homer to Jean Segura in the second at-bat of the game, and gave up another bomb to Nelson Cruz two at-bats later. Both shots came on misplaced four-seamers in the heart of the zone.
Robinson Cano plated Dee Gordon on a sacrifice-fly in the third inning on a curveball, and another misplaced curveball right in the middle of the zone to Cruz was good enough for an RBI single in the next at-bat.
During the third inning, Carrasco's back started to tighten up after he tripped coming back out onto the field for the top half of the frame.
"When I came up I missed one of the steps and I fell a little bit so my back felt a little bit stiff right there," he said postgame. "So I felt a little bit different, I couldn’t throw my fastball. I think I was at like 88 to 90 (mph)."
"Rather than make something that wasn’t a good day worse, we got him out of there and tried to piece it together the best we could,” Francona added.
As Jordan Bastian
Carlos Carrasco this season...
vs. Seattle: 8.2 IP, 12 H, 10 R (9 ER), 8 K, 1 BB, 4 HR
vs. Others: 29.1 IP, 17 H, 4 R (4 ER), 24 K, 6 BB, 1 HR
— Jordan Bastian (@MLBastian) April 28, 2018
">tweeted, Carrasco's numbers against Seattle this year are a definite outlier in his season. In two games against the Mariners, he has pitched eight and two-thirds innings, giving up 12 hits, four homers, 10 runs (nine earned), struck out eight and walked one. Against all other opponents, he's given up just 17 hits, four earned runs, six walks, one homer and has struck out 24 in 29 and one-third innings.
The loss is Carrasco's first of the year, and with it his 10-decision winning streak comes to an end. It is the longest streak by any Tribe pitcher since Cliff Lee won 11 consecutive decisions from July through September of 2008, the year he went on to win the Cy Young Award.
"I didn’t know about that. I just go up there and pitch, that’s what I want to do," Carrasco said. "You said it right now but I didn’t know that."
2. Not exactly relieving
After Carrasco exited the game with the Mariners up 5-1, Zach McAllister picked up right where Carrasco left off in the top of the fourth inning.
David Freitas got on base because of catcher's interference from Roberto Perez, after which McAllister gave up a double to Gordon. In the next at-bat, Segura recorded a two-run RBI single. Cano plated him in his next at-bat with a double, and two batters later, Kyle Seager recorded a two-run homer.
McAllister got out of the inning, but the damage was done. He gave up four hits and five runs (four earned) to give the Mariners a 10-1 lead.
“He’s having a hard time putting guys away," Francona said of McAllister. "He gets to two strikes, like today he got to two strikes with Gordon, left a fastball that wandered back over. Same thing with Cano, he was 2-2, sometimes he starts to run away from his arm a little bit and it’s going this way instead of … that’s why he’s only got two strikeouts.”
In the top of the ninth, Dan Otero gave up a double to Nelson Cruz, and then a two-run shot to Ryon Healy to round out Seattle's scoring.
3. Over Yonder
There were only a handful of offensive highlights for the Tribe on Saturday afternoon, and two of then were courtesy of Yonder Alonso.
In the fourth inning, he nailed a two-run homer on a line drive to center field. The shot came on a 1-2, 87 mph cutter. In the sixth inning, he hit a sacrifice fly to left field to plate Jose Ramirez and narrow Seattle's lead, 10-4.
Alonso finished the game going 2-of-3 from the plate with three RBI and one run.
He has now homered in each of the last three games, the first time in his career he has done so. Over the last eight games, Alonso has gone 10-of-29 with five home runs, a double and 10 RBI.
“He’s been really productive," Francona said of the first baseman. "We’re going to need it. Guys are going to heat up, but it’s nice to see him drive the ball like that.”