CLEVELAND: The Indians outslugged an explosive Boston Red Sox lineup for a second consecutive night Tuesday to push their winning streak to a season-high five games.
The Indians’ offense got to Boston’s veteran starter Jake Peavy early and then with the death blow late to secure the 5-3 win, once again led by the clutch hitting of Michael Bourn. The center fielder was 2-for-4 with a game-winning two-RBI double.
Before Peavy managed to settle in, the Tribe used five consecutive singles in the bottom of the first inning to produce a 3-0 lead that featured RBI hits by Michael Brantley and Lonnie Chisenhall.
But the Red Sox slowly chipped away at the deficit, beginning with a Xander Bogaerts solo home run in the third inning — his second consecutive game with a homer.
Boston added a sixth-inning run on a Jonathan Herrera RBI single that came against Marc Rzepczynski, but was charged to Tribe starter T.J. House, who left with a lead but didn’t figure into the decision despite holding Boston to two runs on six hits over 5⅔ innings.
Back-to-back doubles given up by Indians reliever Scott Atchison allowed the Red Sox to pull into a 3-3 in the seventh. But Indians left-hander Nick Hagadone made his first appearance of the season a memorable one, striking out A.J. Pierzynski with a ball in the dirt and Alex Hassan with high heat to escape the jam without giving up the lead.
After Hagadone got out of the seventh, the Tribe mounted a rally in the bottom of the inning as Bourn continued his hot streak at the plate with a two-run double over the head of left fielder Jonny Gomes that put the Indians back on top by two runs.
After spotting the Indians the early runs, Peavy settled in to retire a string of 14 batters. But the Indians were patient and finally broke through against the right-hander again in the seventh to put an unhappy end to his outing. In 6⅓ innings, Peavy gave up five runs on eight hits to take the loss.
The Tribe threatened again in the eighth inning, loading the bases with just one out, but Yan Gomes hit into an inning-ending double play. Although an insurance run or two would have been nice, Indians closer Cody Allen came on to retire the final Red Sox batter of the eighth inning. He then went on to retire the side in the ninth — including pinch hitter Grady Sizemore — to secure the victory and notch his fifth save.
Stephanie Storm can be reached at email@example.com. Read the Indians blog at www.ohio.com/indians. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/SStormABJ and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/abj.sports.