Houston Astros vs. Cleveland Indians

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CLE
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CLE 0 0 1 1 0 0 1 0 X 3 10 0

Trevor Bauer continued his dominant trend Sunday by taking a shutout into the seventh and Cleveland hung on for a 3-1 win over the Houston Astros.

0:51 | August 24, 2014 | Baseball, Cleveland Indians, Houston Astros, MLB

Game Information
Location: Progressive Field, Cleveland, Ohio
Attendance: 17,123

CLEVELAND (AP) The Indians can thank their starting pitching for keeping them in playoff contention.

Trevor Bauer continued that trend Sunday by taking a shutout into the seventh and Cleveland hung on for a 3-1 win over the Houston Astros.

The Indians (66-63) have used strong work by their rotation to stay in the postseason picture. Cleveland's starters have recorded a 1.71 ERA in 13 games since Aug. 9.

Manager Terry Francona knows securing a playoff spot won't be easy. The Indians trail Kansas City by six games in the AL Central and are battling several teams in the crowded wild card race.

"We have our work cut out for us, but if we pitch like that we're going to give ourselves a chance," he said.

The Indians have won four of their last five series, including three straight.

"We haven't been scoring a ton of runs," he said. "The hope is the pitching stays strong and we start scoring runs, spreading a few games out."

The starters have allowed 15 earned runs in 79 innings in their dominant stretch. Bauer (5-7), winning for the first time since July 18, held Houston to four hits and struck out nine. The right-hander was pulled after issuing a leadoff walk in the seventh.

"Every day you run a new guy out there and you have this feeling you're going to have a really good start," Bauer said. "It's nice for the team to have that confidence. It's been unbelievable."

Cody Allen, the Indians' fourth pitcher, worked out of ninth-inning trouble for his 17th save. He walked pinch-hitter Chris Carter to start the inning and gave up a one-out single to Jake Marisnick. Jose Altuve, the AL's leading hitter, singled to load the bases with two outs, but Allen struck out Dexter Fowler to end his 29-pitch outing.

Carlos Santana's sacrifice fly in the third put Cleveland ahead while Lonnie Chisenhall had an RBI single in the fourth. Jose Ramirez added an RBI single in the seventh.

Rookie right fielder Tyler Holt helped Bauer with two outstanding defensive plays. Holt robbed Marc Krauss of a hit with a diving catch to end the first inning with a runner on first. Holt again took a hit away from Krauss with another diving catch for the first out of the sixth, also with a man on first.

Bauer was 0-3 in his last six starts coming into the game in a season that has been marked by cases of wild inconsistency. He allowed five first-inning runs in two of his last three starts, but didn't give up a hit until the sixth in the other.

"He'll go through spurts where he throws three or four balls in a row, but you look up and he's throwing a lot of strikes," Francona said. "He has periods where he kind of loses what he's doing, but he really competes. He gets mad at himself when he doesn't do what he wants."

TAKE A BREAK

OF Michael Brantley, in a 3-for-30 slump since Aug. 15, wasn't in Sunday's lineup. With the Indians off Monday, Francona thinks the two-day break will help the All-Star, who snapped an 0-for-15 skid Saturday with an RBI single. Brantley is batting .311 and has already reached career highs in homers (18) and RBIs (81).

BETTER REST UP

The Indians don't play Monday, their last off-day until Sept. 25. Cleveland will play 30 consecutive days beginning with Tuesday's game in Chicago. The Indians were scheduled to be off Sept. 8, but instead will host the Angels in a make-up of a rainout in June.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Astros: RHP Brad Peacock (sore forearm) is expected to start Wednesday against Oakland. He was pulled after five innings Friday, but played catch Sunday.

Indians: C Yan Gomes (seven-day concussion disabled list) is expected to accompany the team on its road trip that begins Tuesday in Chicago. He's eligible to be activated Friday.

UP NEXT

Astros: RHP Scott Feldman (7-9) opens a three-game series at home against Oakland on Monday. He matched a career high with 121 pitches in defeating the Yankees in his last start.

Indians: LHP T.J. House (2-3) will start the opener of a three-game series against the White Sox on Tuesday. He has allowed three earned runs or fewer in nine straight starts.

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Pitcher Matchup
Brett Oberholtzer
Innings Pitched:6.2 (Loss)
H 10, R 3, 4.01 ERA
Trevor Bauer
(Win) Innings Pitched:6
H 4, R 0, 4.18 ERA

 
Cody Allen
(Save) Innings Pitched: 1
H 2, R 0, 1.75 ERA

Cleveland batters
Player POS AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG
Michael Bourn CF 4 1 1 0 0 1 1 .262
Jose Ramirez SS 4 0 3 1 0 1 0 .255
Jason Kipnis 2B 3 0 2 0 0 0 2 .249
Carlos Santana 1B 2 0 0 1 1 0 2 .228
Tyler Holt RF 4 0 1 0 0 2 3 .400
Zach Walters 3B 4 0 0 0 0 1 1 .182
Mike Aviles 3B 4 1 1 0 0 2 1 .248
Lonnie Chisenhall 3B 4 1 2 1 0 2 2 .290
Roberto Perez C 2 0 0 0 0 1 3 .233

Houston batters
Player POS AB R H RBI BB SO LOB AVG
Robbie Grossman LF 5 0 1 0 0 2 3 .213
Jose Altuve 2B 5 0 2 0 0 0 0 .334
Dexter Fowler CF 5 0 1 0 0 1 5 .272
Marc Krauss 1B 4 1 1 0 0 1 2 .203
Jon Singleton 1B 3 0 1 1 1 2 1 .189
Marwin Gonzalez SS 3 0 0 0 0 2 3 .257
Chris Carter 1B 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 .227
Gregorio Petit SS 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .293
Carlos Corporan C 1 0 1 0 2 0 0 .240
Matt Dominguez 3B 2 0 0 0 0 2 3 .225
Jason Castro C 2 0 0 0 0 1 2 .228
Jake Marisnick CF 4 0 2 0 0 1 0 .299

Cleveland pitchers
Player IP H R ER BB SO PC-ST ERA
Trevor Bauer 6 4 0 0 3 9 115-73 4.18
Cody Allen 1 2 0 0 1 2 29-18 1.75
Scott Atchison 1 1 0 0 0 1 10-7 2.76
Bryan Shaw 1 2 1 1 0 0 23-14 2.54

Houston pitchers
Player IP H R ER BB SO PC-ST ERA
Brett Oberholtzer 6.2 10 3 3 0 6 103-71 4.01
Mike Foltynewicz 1.1 0 0 0 1 4 19-12 5.79