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Indians Knuckle Under as Orioles Win

May 25, 1997|From Associated Press

Mike Mussina's knuckle-curve was fluttering, and the Cleveland Indians' offense was sputtering Saturday at Cleveland.

Mussina, who rarely defeats Cleveland, had a season-high nine strikeouts and Rafael Palmeiro had three hits, including a three-run home run, as the Baltimore Orioles won, 8-3.

The Orioles improved to 31-14--best in the American League. They also ended the Indians' season-high, six-game winning streak.

Mussina (6-1), who had a 14.81 earned-run average against the Indians last season and was 2-6 in his career, had a season-high nine strikeouts in seven innings. He gave up three runs and nine hits.

Baltimore used to struggle against the Indians at Cleveland, but times are changing and the Orioles are a much better team.

"Two years ago we had no chance," Mussina said. "Last year, we started to match up a little better, and now we feel pretty good about our chances."

Mike Bordick, who was in a one-for-13 slump and had a .186 batting average, was two for four with three runs batted in.

Mussina struck out every Indian batter except Manny Ramirez and David Justice, and had one walk.

In two regular-season starts against Cleveland last season, Mussina gave up 21 hits and 17 earned runs in 10 1/3 innings. He also got a no-decision in Cleveland's 9-4 victory in Game 3 of the AL playoffs.

Kansas City 11, Seattle 5--Slumping Craig Paquette hit two home runs, including a sixth-inning grand slam, and the Royals ended a seven-game losing streak.

Paquette, who was in a five-for-53 skid, hit a solo home run off Jamie Moyer (4-1) in the fifth, then connected off Moyer an inning later for his second career grand slam. It was the third career multi-homer game for Paquette, who has four homers and 16 RBIs this season.

Randy Veres (4-0) gave up one run and three hits in 2 1/3 innings to get the victory at Kansas City, and Hipolito Pichardo got four outs for his seventh save.

Moyer, who had won six consecutive decisions, gave up five runs and seven hits in six innings.

Joey Cora had four hits for the Mariners, who have lost five of seven. Jose Offerman and Jay Bell each had three hits for the Royals.

Minnesota 7, Oakland 4--Ron Coomer drove in three runs for the Twins, all with help from the Metrodome at Minneapolis.

Coomer's two-run double in the fourth was a high fly that got lost against the backdrop of the off-white roof, and his run-scoring single in the fifth came after catcher George Williams lost sight of a foul popup.

Rich Robertson (5-2) won for the third time in four starts. He gave up six hits in seven-plus innings, his longest outing this season. Rick Aguilera pitched the ninth for his ninth save.

New York 4, Boston 2--Yankee Manager Joe Torre replaced slumping third baseman Wade Boggs with Charlie Hayes for the second consecutive game and the move paid off.

Hayes hit a two-run home run with one out in the ninth and the Yankees halted a five-game losing streak.

Paul O'Neill walked with one out in the ninth and Hayes drove a 1-and-2 pitch from John Wasdin (0-2) over the left-center-field fence for his third home run.

Mariano Rivera (1-1) pitched a perfect ninth for the victory.

David Cone threw 127 pitches in eight innings but got little support from the Yankees' slumbering lineup. He walked one and struck out seven to take the major league lead in strikeouts with 85.

Reggie Jefferson went two for three with an RBI for the Red Sox.

Torre had his team skip pregame batting practice in hopes the club would break out of its current batting slump, but the Yankees managed only seven hits off Boston starter Jeff Suppan in 6 2/3 innings.

Torre decided to sit Boggs--batting .252 and in a seven-for-44 slump-- in favor of Hayes on Friday. Saturday, the Yankees defeated an AL East opponent for the first time in five games this season.

Chicago 8, Milwaukee 6--Harold Baines broke a seventh-inning tie with a single and Albert Belle extended his hitting streak to 19 games with a two-run home run at Chicago.

In a game that was delayed twice for a total of 2 hours 4 minutes, John Jaha led off the seventh with his 10th home run, a drive off Chuck McElroy that made it 6-6. The game then was interrupted by a 29-minute rain delay.

Frank Thomas walked against Mike Fetters (1-3) leading off the bottom half, took second on Belle's single and scored on Baines' hit.





Player Team Performance Team's Result Craig Paquette Kansas City 2 for 4, 2 homers, Win including grand slam, 5 RBIs Rafael Palmeiro Baltimore 3 for 5, 2 runs, Win 3 RBIs, home run Ron Coomer Minnesota 3 for 4, 3 RBIs, double Win




Player Team Performance Team's Result Mike Mussina Baltimore 7 innings, 9 hits, Win 3 runs, 9 strikeouts Allen Watson Angels 7 innings, 4 hits, 0 runs Win David Cone New York 8 innings, 6 hits, Win 2 runs, 7 strikeouts


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