Civale dominates for 9th win
Indians blank Mariners 7-0
CLEVELAND (AP) — Aaron Civale gave up a single to start the game before dominating Seattle’s light-hitting lineup for eight innings, leading the Cleveland Indians past the Mariners 7-0 on Friday night in front of the largest crowd at Progressive Field since 2019.
Civale (9-2) allowed J.P. Crawford’s leadoff hit — a grounder that just got past second baseman César Hernández’s glove — and nothing else to become the first AL pitcher with nine wins.
The right-hander struck out a career-high 11 and retired 22 in a row after loading the bases in the first. Blake Parker worked the ninth to complete the two-hitter.
The Mariners, who have been on the wrong side of two no-hitters this season, came into the series batting an MLB-worst .209.
Cleveland’s Bobby Bradley homered in the third off Justin Dunn (1-3) and Amed Rosario had four hits for the Indians.
The series opener was the first game in which capacity attendance was allowed at Progressive Field since before the COVID-19 pandemic, and 22,970 fans came out for the Mariners, $1 hot dogs and fireworks on “Opening Day 2.0.”
Civale and the Indians didn’t disappoint their fans, who still aren’t sure what to make of this young team that can look lost offensively and relies so heavily on its pitching.
Cleveland has hit for enough Civale, who improved to 15-0 when his teammates score at least three runs.
The Indians got the crowd revved up right away, scoring three times off Dunn in the first.
Eddie Rosario had an RBI single, Dunn walked Bradley with the bases full to force in a run and Josh Naylor made it 3-0 with a single. The Indians could have done more to Dunn, but Rosario was thrown out at the plate by center fielder Dillon Thomas.
José Ramírez’s run-scoring single put Cleveland up 4-0 in the second.
Bradley, who was recalled from the minors last week, continued his hot start by connecting for his second homer in 11 at-bats. He later added an RBI single and has six RBIs in six games.
He didn’t make the opening-day roster despite outplaying Jake Bauers, who was designated for assignment by the club last week and traded to Seattle on Thursday.
Quickly back in Cleveland, Bauers went 0 for 3.
Indians catcher Austin Hedges was drilled in the helmet by Dunn in the third.
Hedges collapsed to the ground and stayed on his back in the dirt for nearly two minutes while being checked by manager Terry Francona and a trainer. Hedges stayed in the game before being replaced in the fifth as a precaution.
Dunn was visibly shaken by the beaning.
Seattle got back its top reliever as Kendall Graveman was activated after a COVID-19 scare.
The right-hander had been out since May 23, and spent two weeks quarantining in San Diego. Before he was sidelined, the 30-year-old recorded five saves and didn’t not allow a run in 16 2/3 innings over 14 appearances.
Mariners: Due in part to injuries, Seattle has used an MLB-high 51 players already this season.
Indians: RHP Zach Plesac began throwing this week as he recovers from a broken thumb, suffered when he angrily pulled off his shirt following a start. Francona said Plesac has been attacking his rehab as the club expected. “Knowing Zach, probably have to help him pump the brakes a little bit,” he said.
Indians RHP Triston McKenzie (1-3), who has bounced back and forth from the minors, will be recalled from Columbus to start against Seattle’s Yusei Kikuchi (3-3).
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