Zimmer makes dazzling catch as Indians blank Royals 4-0

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 26: Center fielder Bradley Zimmer #4 of the Cleveland Indians makes a diving catch on a line drive hit by Lorenzo Cain #6 of the Kansas City Royals to end the top of the fifth inning at Progressive Field on August 26, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

CLEVELAND (AP) — Mike Clevinger pitched six sharp innings and rookie Bradley Zimmer made a sensational catch in center field before ending Jason Hammel’s bid for a perfect game, leading the Cleveland Indians to a 4-0 win over the Kansas City Royals on Saturday night.

Roberto Perez hit a two-run homer off Hammel (6-10), and Edwin Encarnacion and Carlos Santana also connected as the defending AL champions moved a season-high 16 games over .500 at 72-56.

The Royals fell eight games back in the AL Central and were shut out for the second straight night. They have not scored in 25 innings.

Clevinger (7-5) struck out a career-high nine and matched Hammel pitch for pitch before giving way to Cleveland’s bullpen.

But if not for Zimmer’s catch , Clevinger may not have gotten past the fifth.