CLEVELAND (92.3 The Fan) – On a day when the Indians needed it, Ubaldo Jimenez finally stepped up in a big way, matching pitch for pitch Rangers Japanese sensation Yu Darvish in a Tribe 4-2 win.
Jimenez, who was awful last Tuesday in a loss to the White Sox, went 7 innings, allowing 0 runs on 2 hits. He walked 5 and struck out 6.
On the day, the Tribe’s number two starter threw 107 pitches, throwing 61 for strikes. He moves to 3-2 on the season as the Tribe moves to 15-11, still in first in the AL Central.
The Indians had two big hits off Darvish, but they accounted for three of the teams runs. The first was a two-run double down the first base line by Asdrubal Cabrera to make it 2-0 Indians in the third.
The hit scored Johnny Damon and Jason Kipnis, who had started the inning off Darvish with a single and a walk. The second big hit was Jason Kipnis’ 5th HR of the season, a no-doubt about it bomb to right in the 5th that put the Indians up 4-0.
Kipnis leads the team in both homers and runs batted in. He has five dingers on the season and 18 RBI.
The Indians got to Darvish early, as they had two on with no outs in the first, but couldn’t push a run across. Darvish, who entered the game 4-0, didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning against the Indians till the 4th.
On the day Darvish went 6 innings, allowing 4 runs, 3 earned on 6 hits. He struck out a career-high 11 Indians, and walked four. He threw 112 pitches with 63 strikes.
The most trouble Jimenez got into was all on his own, as after two men were out in the 3rd, he managed to walk the bases loaded.
Twice during the 12 balls Carlos Santana came out to calm him down, and even once Manny Acta strutted to the mound to see what was going on.
The pitcher though rebounded, as he was able to get a quick two strikes on Michael Young, then get him to ground out to Cabrera to end the inning.
Jimenez turned it over to his bullpen in the 8th, and that’s when the Rangers were finally able to get on the board against Tony Sipp.
Ian Kinsler singled, and Elvis Andrus doubled to put runners on second and third with no outs. Josh Hamilton grounded in one run, and Michael Young singled in another.
Sipp got David Murphy to strikeout, and then Vinnie Pestano came in and got Nelson Cruz to strikeout to end the 8th inning.
Chris Perez worked the 9th for his MLB leading 11th save of 2012.
Monday the Indians will play a pair against the White Sox. Game one will be at 1:05pm with the second game at 7:05pm. Zach McAllister will throw in game one for the Indians against Philip Humber (1-1, 4.62).
Game two will see Josh Tomlin (1-2, 5.27) go for the Tribe. The Sox have yet to announce who will throw for them in the second matchup.