The Indians are in first, but how would they fare against the top team in the American League? That’s what folks asked before the Tribe faced the Rangers on Friday night at a balmy Progressive Field.
Cleveland carved out a 6-3 win as starter Jeanmar Gomez was solid on the hill, going seven innings, allowing eight hits and three runs, while striking out two.
The Wahoos were backed at the plate by Shin Soo Choo, who belted a two-run homer, and Jack Hannahan, who stroked a solo shot that needed an assist from video replay.
Travis Hafner broke a 3-3 tie in the sixth inning with a sacrifice fly, scoring Jason Kipnis.
Newest Indian Johnny Damon, the 38-year-old with more than 2,700 career hits, ripped a triple to deep center field to give the Tribe insurance in the seventh inning.
The three-run lead, provided in part by Damon’s two-run triple stood up. Vinnie Pestano worked a scoreless eighth inning. Chris Perez worked the ninth inning to register his tenth save of the season.
Indians banged out 10 hits and made them count for the 6-3 win.
Tribe and Rangers meet again on Saturday night.