CLEVELAND– Saturday’s game, was the worst start for pitcher Carlos Carrasco in a while.
Before coming into today’s game, seven Mariners hitters were batting above .250 against Carrasco in their careers.
Last time Carrasco faced the Mariners was on the second day of the season where he went 5.2 innings but giving up five runs. The difference was the offense showed up. Today was a different story as the Indians lost 12-4 against Seattle and had no answer against Mike Leake.
“In the first inning, (Seattle) made some pretty good contact,” manager Terry Francona said. “It looked like he just lost his aggressiveness and started trying to pick a little bit and then his back started to tighten up. So, rather than make something that wasn’t a good day worse, we got him out of there.”
The right-hander has pitched in a total of five games and holds a 3.08 ERA. Today he pitched three innings, giving up five runs and suffered his first loss of the season (4-1).
Seattle wasted no time attacking Carrasco, as Jean Segura hit a two-run homer (94 mph fastball) to give Seattle a 2-0 lead right off the bat. Then two batters later, Nelson Cruz (who held a .250 career batting average) hit a solo shot to make it a 3-0 game.
The longball eased just a little bit after that, though Robinson Cano hit a sacrifice fly to left to score Gordon. Then, Cruz hit a sharply hard line drive to left field for an RBI single to give the Mariners a 5-1 lead in the third.
With the game already out of hand, back tightness forced Carrasco to exit the game after 64 pitches following the third inning.
“I was good in the first and second inning. I think it was the third inning when I came out,” Carrasco said. “I missed one of the steps and I fell a little bit, so my back got a little bit stiff right there. I think my fastball was somewhere like 88-90.”
Some pitchers struggle to throws strikes or get the ball near the plate. Carrasco’s problem wasn’t either on Saturday. The problem was leaking over the middle part of the plate.
Zach McAllister struggled as well. Coming in the fourth inning, he had a brutal outing. The Mariners attacked five runs on four hits starting with Gordon hitting a double and Segura hitting an RBI single to left. Robinson Cano delivered a sharp line drive to center for an RBI double. Then the long ball came back, Kyle Seager who owns the Indians in his career launched a two-run home run.
“Zach had a hard time putting guys away,” Francona said. “He gets to two strikes, like today he got to two strikes with Gordon, left a fastball that wandered back over. The 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.”
After the fourth inning, Jeff Beliveau, and Matt Belisle worked scoreless innings, Dan Otero gave up two runs in the ninth on a homer to Ryon Healy.
Up next: Indians will try to split the weekend series as Josh Tomlin will be on the hill for the Tribe. Marco Gonzales will pitch for Seattle.