Santana HR in 8th, Indians send Mariners to 6th loss in row
CLEVELAND — Carlos Santana‘s return to Cleveland continued to be a big hit Saturday.
Santana connected for a two-run homer in the eighth inning and Cleveland rallied past Seattle 5-4 Saturday, the Mariners’ sixth straight loss.
Santana tagged Connor Sadzeck (0-1) for his fifth home run of the season.
The switch-hitting first baseman played for the Indians from 2010-17 before signing with Philadelphia prior to last year. Santana was traded to Seattle in December before being dealt to the Indians as part of a three-team swap that included Tampa Bay.
Santana is tied for the team lead in homers and is batting .321 with 19 RBI, also both team highs.
“Everyone knows this is my sweet home,” he said. “I love Cleveland. I’ve played here a long time. I’m excited to be back.”
Tim Beckham hit a leadoff home run to break a 3-all tie in the eighth, Seattle’s fourth solo homer of the game.
Carlos Carrasco allowed all four home runs, a career high for the right-hander, who struck out nine in 7 2/3 innings. The six homers occurred in misty conditions throughout the game.
Francisco Lindor singled to lead off the eighth against Roenis Elias and took second on Leonys Martin‘s sacrifice. Jose Ramirez struck out and Seattle manager Scott Servais went to Sadzeck, a rookie right-hander.
Santana quickly foiled that strategy and the Indians won for the second straight game in their final at-bat.
“He certainly didn’t throw it to where he was hoping to get,” Servais said. “Connor has been on a really good run throwing the ball well. He made a mistake today and we paid for it.”
Said Indians manager Terry Francona: “He killed that ball.”
“I know some balls went out of the ballpark today, but it was heavy,” he said.
Mariners starter Mike Leake allowed three runs in six innings. Seattle is 5-15 since starting the season with a 13-2 record.
Encarnacion played the last two seasons with Cleveland before being dealt to Seattle in the Santana trade.
“We did what we do,” Servais said. “We hit some home runs. Unfortunately they were solo homers.”
Martin was removed from in the ninth with tightness in his hamstring. Jordan Luplow finished the game in center field.
Mariners: Healy was out of the lineup after leaving Friday’s game with groin tightness.
Indians: RHP Danny Salazar has been shut down from throwing at extended spring training. He had progressed to throwing bullpen sessions after having shoulder surgery in July. Salazar missed all of last season.
Lindor ended the top of the sixth when he made a diving stop behind second on Encarnacion’s grounder. First base umpire Tom Hallion ruled Encarnacion beat the one-hop throw, but the call was overturned after a review.
Lindor stood next to Encarnacion while the replay was shown on the video board, and began pointing at his former teammate when it became clear the call would be changed. Lindor raced to the dugout when the change became official and Encarnacion was left at first laughing about the play.
“I told him he’s getting older,” Lindor said. “I was like, `Bro, you knew I was gonna one-hop the ball. Everybody knows I’m one-hopping the baseball.’ I can’t tell you what he said. But it’s all fun.”
ON THE MOVE
The Indians acquired infielder Adam Rosales from Minnesota for cash and assigned him to Triple-A Columbus. He appeared in 13 games with Cleveland last season.
The Mariners acquired reliever Austin Adams from Washington for minor league pitcher Nick Wells and cash. Adams, who turns 28 on Sunday and pitched in one game for the Nationals this year, was optioned to Triple-A Tacoma.
The series ends Sunday when Erik Swanson starts for the Mariners against Cody Anderson in a matchup of right-handers. Swanson (0-3, 6.62 ERA) will make his fourth career start. Anderson will be recalled from Triple-A Columbus to make his first start in the majors since Sept. 14, 2016. He missed most of the last two seasons after having Tommy John surgery.
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