(Thursday, September 20th)
Final Score: Cleveland 4, Minnesota 3 (10 innings)
Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) - Casey Kotchman hit a game-winning RBI single in the bottom of the 10th inning on Thursday and the Cleveland Indians avoided a three-game sweep with a 4-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins.
Shin-Soo Choo began the 10th with a double off the wall in left-center field, then moved to third base on a groundout. Anthony Swarzak (3-5) followed with consecutive intentional walks before Kotchman grounded the deciding single up the middle.
"I tried not to over-think it. Tried to get a pitch to hit and hit it," Kotchman said.
Esmil Rogers (3-1) tossed a perfect top of the 10th to earn the win, while Kotchman finished 3-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored, as the Indians halted a five-game skid against their AL Central rival.
The Twins, meanwhile, were looking to secure their first sweep in Cleveland since 1991.
Corey Kluber was charged with three runs on five hits over a six-inning start for the Indians. The righty walked one and struck out five.
Twins starter Esmerling Vasquez is still searching for his first win of the season after giving up three runs on six hits over 5 2/3 innings.
"(Vasquez) did a nice job of battling," said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire. "Overall, he did a good job."
Trevor Plouffe's two-out, solo homer gave Vasquez and the Twins a 3-2 lead in the top of the sixth but the right-hander allowed Kotchman's two-out double in the bottom half before exiting.
Kyle Waldrop then hit Brent Lillibridge with a pitch and Jack Hannahan followed with a game-tying base hit up the middle.
Earlier, Ben Revere spotted the Twins a 1-0 lead when he led off the fourth inning with a single, stole second base, moved to third on a groundout, and came home on Kluber's wild pitch.
In the home half, Revere threw out Kotchman at the plate to end the inning, but not before the Indians grabbed a 2-1 lead.
Vasquez began the frame with consecutive walks before Kotchman and Lillibridge delivered back-to-back RBI singles. Hannahan followed with a hit to load the bases, but Revere limited the damage when he caught Thomas Neal's shallow fly to right and easily retired the tagging Kotchman.
In the fifth, Pedro Florimon worked a two-out walk and scored from first base on Denard Span's double down the line in shallow left field, making it 2-2.
Despite the loss, the Twins won the season series, 12-6 ... Plouffe has 23 home runs on the season ... Vasquez is 0-2 in four starts this season after going 9-6 in 31 games -- eight starts -- at Triple-A ...Vasquez and Kluber also squared off on Sept. 9, with neither starter receiving a decision in an 8-7 Minnesota win.
09/20 19:57:22 ET