Published July 03, 2010
CLEVELAND (AP) — Matt LaPorta hit a game-ending single in the 10th inning, giving the Cleveland Indians a 5-4 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Saturday night.
Travis Hafner started the rally with a one-out double off Craig Breslow (3-2) and was run for by Anderson Hernandez. After Austin Kearns was intentionally walked, Jhonny Peralta flied out to deep center. LaPorta bounced a full-count pitch into center field, giving Cleveland its sixth win in seven games.
Oakland lost for only the second time in eight games.
Tony Sipp (1-2) pitched the 10th for Cleveland.
Jake Westbrook allowed three runs — two earned — and four hits in six innings.
Clay Mortensen started for Oakland in place of Dallas Braden, who was placed on the disabled list Saturday with elbow stiffness. Mortensen, called up from Triple-A Sacramento, pitched six innings and allowed four runs and six hits. He struck out seven, a career high.
Oakland third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff was hitless in five at-bats and is in an 0 for 29 slump, the longest of his career.
Indians outfielder Shin-Soo Choo missed the game with an injured right thumb. Choo was hurt trying to make a diving catch in the eighth inning Friday. He was scheduled to have an MRI on Saturday. Outfielder Michael Brantley was removed from the game at Triple-A Columbus on Saturday night and could possibly be added to Cleveland's roster, depending on Choo's status.
Jayson Nix hit a two-run homer in the first, giving Cleveland the early lead. Oakland scored three in the third with the help of two errors by shortstop Jason Donald. After Adam Rosales led off with a double, Donald fielded Gabe Gross' groundball, but his throw to first pulled LaPorta off the bag. Cliff Pennington tripled off the fence in center to tie it.
Donald couldn't field Coco Crisp's groundball for his second error. Pennington scored and Crisp was given an RBI.
Gross, the left fielder, helped give back the lead with an error of his own in the fourth. Mortensen retired the first two batters, but gave up a single to Kearns and walked Peralta. Gross charged LaPorta's single, but the ball skipped by him and rolled to the wall. LaPorta was given an RBI as Kearns and Peralta scored on the two-base error. LaPorta ended up at third.
Oakland tied it in the seventh against Rafael Perez. Pennington doubled with one out and scored on Daric Barton's two-out single that skipped over third base.
NOTES: Braden was placed on the DL before the game, retroactive to June 22. He's 0-5 in eight starts since pitching a perfect game against Tampa Bay on May 9. ... OF Conor Jackson was out of the lineup for the third straight game with a hamstring injury. ... The members of the United States four-man bobsled team who won the gold medal at the Vancouver Olympics threw out ceremonial first pitches.