DENVER (AP) — Kyle Freeland pitched 6 1/3 effective innings, Nolan Arenado drove in three runs and the Colorado Rockies beat the Cleveland Indians 8-1 on Wednesday for their fourth straight win.
Charlie Blackmon, the reigning National League Player of the Month, added two RBIs for the Rockies, who lead the NL with 38 wins. Ian Desmond had three hits and scored two runs.
Freeland (7-3) allowed one run and six hits, struck out five and walked none while lowering his ERA to 3.34. The Denver native has turned in a quality start in eight of his last nine starts.
Cleveland right-hander Trevor Bauer (5-5), pitching on two days’ rest, allowed four runs and tied his season high with five walks in 3 1/3 innings. He threw just 30 pitches Sunday against Kansas City before rain halted the game and ended his appearance.
Bauer walked three in the third and Arenado hit a two-run double. Blackmon added another bases-loaded double in the fourth, lifting Colorado to a 4-0 lead.
Arenado brought in Blackmon with a triple off the wall in the sixth.
The Indians looked to get back into the game in the seventh after Jose Ramirez homered and Edwin Encarnacion came off the bench with two runners in scoring position. But the 34-year-old slugger hit a weak grounder to the pitcher to end the inning.
Colorado outscored the Indians 19-4 in the two-game set. The Indians helped out, walking 14 batters.
Indians: Encarnacion (right hip soreness) is expected to start in the DH spot when the Indians return home Friday.
Rockies: OF Gerardo Parra (strained right quad) was placed on the 10-day disabled list and the team recalled INF-OF Jordan Patterson from the minors. Parra left Tuesday’s game in the third inning when he pulled up short during an attempted steal of second base.
PACE OF PLAY
Faster, please. That’s the opinion of baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred, who reiterated his priority of speeding up the pace of play when he visited Coors Field on Wednesday.
“I think we continue to struggle with dead time in the game,” Manfred said. “We’re having and will continue to have conversations with the MLBPA about some rule changes that we feel would help us improve on the topic of pace of play.”
Cleveland optioned right-hander Mike Clevinger to Triple-A Columbus and recalled left-hander Kyle Crockett from its top farm club. Clevinger allowed five runs in four innings on Tuesday, but Cleveland manager Terry Francona said that was not the reason for the move.
“We have three off days in eight days, that’s why,” Francona said. “It’s not a reaction to last night’s game. He knows he’s going to start one of those games in the doubleheader in Minnesota (on June 17). He’ll pitch once in between in Columbus.”
Crockett got one out Wednesday and allowed a run.
Indians: RHP Corey Kluber (4-2, 4.36 ERA) faces the Chicago White Sox on Friday. He threw six shutout innings against Oakland last Thursday in his first start since coming off the disabled list after being sidelined by a back injury.
Rockies: RHP Tyler Chatwood (5-7, 4.60 ERA) faces the Chicago Cubs on Thursday in the opener of a four-game set at Wrigley Field. Chatwood is 3-3 with a 2.68 ERA on the road this season.
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