Reporting Matt Loede
CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – Indians fans can take a deep breath, the longest losing streak in three years is over.
The team scored six runs against Twins starter Brian Duensing, and got a quality start from Justin Masterson as the Tribe won for the first time since July 26th, beating the Twins 6-2.
Masterson went 7 innings, allowing just a two-run homer to Alexi Casilla in the 5th for his only mistake of the day. He allowed just three hits, walked four and struck out seven to improve to 8-10.
The offense was paced with 11 hits, as Shin-Soo Choo led the way with four hits, including a double. He also had two RBI.
The Indians had been outscored 95-36 in the 11-game losing streak, but finally got a solid start from Masterson and some solid offense to end the streak.
The team jumped on Duensing (2-7) in the first, as Jason Kipnis walked and stole second, then scored on Choo’s one out double.
Carlos Santana gave the Tribe a 2-0 edge with a single to left to score Choo to give Masterson an early cushion to work with.
the Indians pushed the lead to 4-0 with two more in the second. Casey Kotchman had a one-out single, then Brent Lillibridge hit a grounder to second, and Tsuyoshi Nishioka tried a flip, but the ball never got there for an error.
After Kipnis struck out, Asdrubal Cabrera singled in Kotchman to make it 3-0, and then Choo singled in Lillibridge to make it 4-0.
The Twins cut the lead in half in the 5th when after a leadoff walk, Casilla hit his first homer of 2012 to make it a 4-2 game.
The Indians also broke a seven-game losing streak to the Twins, who lost for only the fourth time in 13 games.
Ben Revere was hitless in four at-bats, ending his 21-game hitting streak.
Nishioka’s misadventures continued in the sixth to allow the Indians to put the game away.
He lost Shelley Duncan’s routine popup a few feet into the outfield in the sun and it fell for a double. After a sacrifice and the infield playing in, he made a high throw to the plate on Kotchman’s grounder and pinch-runner Ezequiel Carrera scored. Kipnis added a sacrifice fly.
From there, the Indians got another inning from Masterson, then one each from Vinnie Pestano and then the 9th Esmail Rogers pitched and was able to go 1-2-3 to secure the win.
Now at 51-60, the Indians will stay at home to start a four-game set with the Boston Red Sox starting on Thursday night at 7pm.