CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – Saturday night was billed as a pitching matchup of two All-Star throwers from the American League.
Indians ace Justin Masterson was just a bit better though than Rangers hurler Yu Darvish, as the Indians beat Texas 1-0 at Progressive Field.
The win was the third straight for the Indians, and they move to 4-1 vs the Rangers this season with a chance for a sweep on Sunday.
The Tribe is now 55-48 on the season, while the scuffling Rangers fall to 56-48.
Masterson got just enough offense, with the Tribe’s only run of the night coming in the first inning.
Michael Bourn got a hold of Darvish’s second pitch of the game, and hit it just over the wall in right for his 4th homer of the year to make it 1-0.
Darvish never got into trouble after that, and dominated the Indians to the tune of six innings, three hits, and 11 strikeouts.
The hard luck loser for the Rangers falls to 9-5 on the season.
Masterson threw great again for the Indians, beating Texas with a solid slider and a number of ground balls that the defense ate up.
Unlike the road trip and the first game at Progressive Field on Friday when the team had two errors, the Indians defense did their job.
Masterson got into trouble in the fifth, allowing Texas to load the bases with two outs. The biggest Rangers threat was stopped when Nelson Cruz hit into a fielder’s choice.
The Tribe ace moves to 12-7 with the win. Joe Smith got out of the 8th with a good pitch to Adrian Beltre for a flyout, making sure to keep the lead at 1-0.
Chris Perez, who threw two innings on Friday night in the 11-8 win, pitched a perfect 1-2-3 ninth for his 14th save of the year.
The Indians will go for the sweep on Sunday at 1:05pm at Progressive Field as Ubaldo Jimenez (7-5, 4.49) goes vs Alexi Ogando (4-2, 2.93).
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