Published July 24, 2012
| Sports Network
Cleveland, OH – Justin Masterson outdueled Tommy Hunter and the Indians took the final game of a four-game set against the Baltimore Orioles, 3-1.
Masterson (7-8) held Baltimore to one run on seven hits over 7 1/3 innings. After walking a career-high seven in his last start in Tampa Bay, Masterson only handed out one free pass while striking out six.
"I had good movement, for the most part, in the zone," Masterson said. "For the most part, yeah, down in the zone, more or less."
"Masterson did a tremendous job," Cleveland manager Manny Acta said. "He did what we expect our No. 1 guy to do -- get out there and shut down the opposition and give us an opportunity to win a ball game even when we don't score many runs."
Shin-Soo Choo provided the decisive shot for Cleveland, socking a two-run home run in the third inning.
"Choo got a couple good pitches to hit," Hunter said. "He got it up in a jet stream ... Just a bad pitch."
Hunter (4-5) allowed three runs in seven-plus innings. He surrendered eight hits and struck out four, as the Orioles saw their five-game win streak come to an end.
Down 2-1, Baltimore had an opportunity to tie the game in the eighth inning after Nick Markakis delivered a one-out single to end Masterson's night.
Endy Chavez greeted Vinnie Pestano with a line drive into the left-field corner. Markakis ran through a stop sign and then stopped between third and home, despite Asdrubal Cabrera's bobble in the relay. After Cabrera collected the ball, Markakis was caught in a run down and tagged out. Pestano struck out Jim Thome to end the rally.
Casey Kotchman reached base in the third inning on an infield single. Two batters later, Choo crushed a high cutter over the right-field fence to give the Indians a 2-0 lead.
The O's picked up a run in the fifth after Masterson plunked Ryan Flaherty with two outs. Omar Quintanilla smacked a double into the left-field gap to bring Baltimore within a run.
Cleveland picked up an insurance run in the eighth. Choo led off with a single and Cabrera hit a grounder off of Hunter for a base hit, chasing Hunter from the game. Troy Patton entered and Jason Kipnis dropped down a bunt single to load the bases. Michael Brantley shot a base hit past a drawn-in infield to plate Choo.
Chris Perez set down the Orioles in order in the ninth to wrap up his 27th save of the season.
Choo's homer was the 22nd Hunter has allowed this season, third-most in the American League...In his last 12 starts combined, the Orioles have scored 35 runs while Hunter was in the game, with 11 of those runs coming on June 14 in his start against the Pirates...The Orioles have posted six straight quality starts for the first time since May 10-15, 2011...Markakis, who went 1-for-3, is now 17-for-47 since returning from the disabled list...The Indians are 28-3 in games in which Pestano and Perez both appear...The Orioles went 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position and stranded five. The Orioles have had 31 games without a hit with a runner in scoring position...The Indians went 3- for-11 with runners in scoring position and left seven on base.