Rookie Ryan shines as Twins hold Indians to 1 hit in 3-0 win

Published 6:54 am Thursday, September 9, 2021

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CLEVELAND (AP) — Joe Ryan carried a perfect game into the seventh inning of his second big league appearance, helping the Minnesota Twins beat the Cleveland Indians 3-0 on Wednesday night.

Ryan, who was acquired in a July trade with Tampa Bay for slugger Nelson Cruz, retired his first 19 batters before Amed Rosario lined a single through the left side of the infield with one out in the seventh.

“I was kind of like, shoot, when the ball went through, but then I moved on to how I was going to get the next hitter,” Ryan said. “I just tried to keep it as simple as I could and hit my spots. Being in the big leagues has been great so far.”

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Caleb Thielbar worked a perfect eighth and Tyler Duffey finished the one-hitter for his third save. Rosario was the only baserunner for Cleveland, which has been no-hit twice and held without a hit in a seven-inning game this season.

“Really, that was not the pitch I was looking for, but I was able to get the hit,” Rosario said. “He threw the ball extremely well and it was moving around. You’ve got to tip your hat to him. He had it going good.”

Ryan (1-1) struck out four over seven innings, throwing 61 strikes in 85 pitches. The 25-year-old right-hander made his major league debut Sept. 1 against the Cubs and allowed three runs in five innings.

Miguel Sanó homered for Minnesota, which pitched back-to-back shutouts for the first time since 2019. Nick Gordon had an RBI double and Byron Buxton drove in Ryan Jeffers with a fielder’s choice.

“Thank God that Joe came out and pitched the way he did because our offense didn’t have a lot going on,” Jeffers said. “We went with his off-speed stuff and used his fastball as a kill pitch. The Indians were pretty aggressive, which kept the pitches down.”

Cleveland only managed one near-hit in the first six innings. It occurred in the second when Franmil Reyes slapped a grounder past third, but Luis Arraez ranged wide to his right and threw out the 6-foot-5, 275-pound slugger by a half-step.

Ryan was seeking Minnesota’s first no-hitter since Francisco Liriano on May 3, 2011, at the White Sox. Cleveland was no-hit on the road by Carlos Rodón of the White Sox on April 14 and at home by Cincinnati’s Wade Miley on May 7.

“Joe believes in himself and his stuff works in the big leagues,” Twins acting manager Bill Evers said. “His command was excellent and the game plan worked perfectly.”

Minnesota opened the scoring in the fifth. Rob Refsnyder walked with two outs, stole second and scored on Gordon’s double to right off Triston McKenzie.

Sanó hit his 25th homer in the seventh. Jeffers doubled and scored in the eighth.

McKenzie (4-6) had his career-long win streak snapped at three. He struck out seven while working six innings of one-run ball.

The right-hander has yielded three earned runs in his last 27 innings for a 1.00 ERA in his last four starts.

Minnesota has won four straight, while the Indians lost their third in a row.

Twins manager Rocco Baldelli, whose first child was born Tuesday, will rejoin the team Friday when Minnesota hosts Kansas City. Baldelli’s wife, Allie, and daughter Louisa are doing well, according to pitching coach Wes Johnson.

“I want him to enjoy his baby girl, but there are some things that I need to talk to him about after the game,” Johnson said with a smile.

Twins: RHP Alex Colomé (rest) was given the night off after pitching out of the bullpen on four straight days. Colomé threw four scoreless innings and earned three saves during the stretch, which included two games at Tampa Bay and two in Cleveland.

Indians: C Roberto Pérez (right shoulder inflammation), who has been on the injured list since Aug. 4, logged two plate appearances for Triple-A Columbus in the first game of his rehab assignment Tuesday. He had a sacrifice fly and struck out against Gwinnett.

Twins: RHP Randy Dobnak (1-7, 7.64 ERA) starts the series finale Thursday. He picked up his only win of the year on May 21 at Progressive Field, tossing six scoreless innings, and is 1-0 with a 0.69 ERA in three career appearances in Cleveland.

Indians: RHP Cal Quantrill (4-3, 3.15 ERA) suffered his first loss since June 6 in his last start, allowing five runs in six innings at Boston on Sept. 3. Quantrill pitched 16 times between defeats, going 4-0 with a 2.75 ERA.