Carmona beats Santana again; Indians complete sweepMay 17, 2007 - 8:22 PM CLEVELAND (Ticker) -- Fausto Carmona doesn't have the pedigree of Johan Santana, but he has two wins over the two-time Cy Young Award winner.
For the second time in less than a month, Carmona outdueled Santana, tossing a four-hitter for his first career complete game as the Cleveland Indians completed a three-game sweep of the Minnesota Twins with a 2-0 victory Thursday afternoon.
Mixing a fastball that reached 95 miles per hour with an effective sinker, Carmona (5-1) retired 18 of the last 20 batters he faced and recorded 17 groundball outs for his fifth straight win.
"You could see the frustration in the hitters' faces," Indians catcher Victor Martinez said. "It's tough to hit his sinker. That's why I kept telling him to keep the ball down."
The righthander recorded 11 straight outs before Michael Cuddyer reached on an infield single with one out in the ninth. Indians manager Eric Wedge visited the mound and contemplated bringing in closer Joe Borowski, but stayed with Carmona.
"I just wanted to make sure he was strong," Wedge said. "I had every intention of leaving him out there."
"He asked how I was feeling," Carmona said through a translator. "I told him I was feeling good."
The decision paid off when Carmona retired Justin Morneau and Torii Hunter in fielder's choice grounders to end the game.
"Righthanders have no chance unless they get lucky and get a hit on a broken bat," Hunter said. "I tell you that dude is filthy. If you've never played the game, I can't explain to you how much his ball was moving. It's not normal. He's not even human. It was so scary, I thought I was hung over."
The Indians have won all five meetings from the Twins this season, outscoring their American League Central rivals, 36-14, and improved their home record to 14-3.
"The guys are always excited about playing at home," Wedge said. "It means a lot for the ball club to play well at home."
A product of the Indians' Dominican Academy, Carmona allowed two runs in 7 2/3 innings in a 5-3 win over Santana and the Twins on April 24. Before that, Carmona had lost 11 straight decisions.
"It feels really good, but it doesn't matter that I have beaten him twice," Carmona said through a translator. "I just want to help the team win."
Santana (4-4) struck out a season-high 11 and yielded just four hits in eight innings in the rematch. However, two of the hits were back-to-back home runs by Martinez and Ryan Garko in the seventh inning. They were the eighth and ninth homers allowed by Santana this season.
Martinez led off the seventh with his fifth home run of the season, pulling a high fastball over the left field wall.
"It was a 2-0 count, and I was looking for a strike," Martinez said. "I put a good swing on the ball. It felt good to get that run for Fausto."
"I was trying to throw a fastball away but it stayed in the middle of the plate," Santana said.
Garko then followed with his fifth home run of the year, launching a high fastball into the seats in left-center field. Garko is 4-for-11 with two homers in his career against the Venezuelan lefthander.
"With a pitcher like Santana, you have to pick your pitch and wait for it," Garko said. "Even then, the pitch I hit for a homer, is the same pitch I swung through three or four times earlier."
But the day belonged to Carmona, who extended his scoreless innings streak to 15. He has allowed just six earned runs and 29 hits in his last five starts.
"When he keeps the ball down, he's almost unhittable," Martinez said. "He's throwing sinkers at 94 to 96. It's tough to hit. I'm glad he is on my side."
The Indians outscored the Twins, 22-8, in the first two games of this series before running into Santana, who had most of the Indians flailing away at the plate.
Josh Barfield hit a fly ball to the warning track in left field in the third inning and Trot Nixon reached the warning track in right field in the fifth inning before Martinez and Garko broke through in the seventh.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
- - - - - - - - - - - -
MINNESOTA 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 0
CLEVELAND 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 x 2 4 0 (FINAL)
BATTERIES: MIN - JOHAN SANTANA, JUAN RINCON (8TH) AND MIKE REDMOND
CLE - FAUSTO CARMONA AND VICTOR MARTINEZ
HOME RUNS: MIN - NONE
CLE - VICTOR MARTINEZ (5) OFF JOHAN SANTANA
May 17 2:25 PM
AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
SOLO HOME RUN BY RYAN GARKO (5) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN THE
7TH OFF JOHAN SANTANA.
CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 0, CLEVELAND 2
DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: T NIXON (.283, 0-FOR-2)
Twins vs. IndiansMay 17 1:52 PM
AT CLEVELAND - SCORING UPDATE
SOLO HOME RUN BY VICTOR MARTINEZ (5) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
THE 7TH OFF JOHAN SANTANA.
CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 0, CLEVELAND 1
DUE UP FOR CLEVELAND: R GARKO (.306, 0-FOR-2)
Twins vs. IndiansMay 17 1:51 PM
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