Cody Bellinger homers twice in Los Angeles Dodgers' win over Cleveland Indians

By Jim Ingraham, The Sports Xchange  |  June 14, 2017 at 2:35 AM
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CLEVELAND -- Cody Bellinger's home-run rampage continued Tuesday night. The Los Angeles Dodgers rookie was 3-for-4, with a double, two home runs and four RBIs, as the Dodgers won their fifth game in a row, beating the Cleveland Indians 7-5 at Progressive Field.

In his last three games, Bellinger is 6-for-12, with five home runs and eight RBIs.

"For a young player to impact a championship-caliber team like this, he's exceeded our expectations," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. "And the best part is he's going to continue to get better."

Leading off the eighth inning, Bellinger broke a 2-2 tie by blasting a 2-1 pitch from Andrew Miller over the right field wall for his 16th home run. It's the first home run Miller has given up this season.

"I left it in a spot where he can hit it pretty well. He's a hot hitter with a pretty good approach right now," Miller said.

"He's got nasty stuff," Bellinger said. "You've got to try not to do too much. He hung a slider, and I got it."

In the ninth, Bellinger walloped a three-run homer, his 17th, off Boone Logan.

Both of the homers by the left-handed hitting Bellinger came off left-handed pitchers.

"He's not intimidated by anything," Roberts said. "Every time he gets in the box I feel like he's going to get a hit."

Miller (3-1) took the loss, his first loss in 53 appearances for Cleveland, since he was acquired in a trade from the Yankees on July 31 of last year. Miller had been 7-0 since joining the Indians.

Indians manager Terry Francona became ill in the eighth inning and had to leave the dugout. He was replaced by bench coach Brad Mills. There was no further information on the condition of Francona, who did not meet with reporters after the game.

Clayton Kershaw (9-2) pitched seven innings, allowing two runs on six hits, with four strikeouts and two walks. Like Roberts, Kershaw is impressed by Bellinger, who is the first Dodgers player to hit two home runs in back-to-back games since Adrian Beltre did it in August of 2004. Bellinger is also only the third Dodgers rookie to have four multi-homer games in a season. Mike Piazza had five such games in 1993 and Corey Seager had four games in 2016.

"He gets what this is all about," Kershaw said of Bellinger. "He's confident, but humble. When he steps into the box, he tries to do damage, and he's been doing it."

Cleveland starter Trevor Bauer pitched 5 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on six hits, with five strikeouts and three walks.

The Indians scored three runs in the ninth on a three-run home run by Daniel Robertson off reliever Chris Hatcher. Kenley Jansen relieved Hatcher and picked up his 12th save by striking out Jason Kipnis to end the game.

The Dodgers struck first, scoring two runs in the second inning. Chris Taylor led off with a single.

Bauer retired the next two batters, but Yasil Puig hit a 1-1 pitch over the wall in center field for his 10th home run, giving Los Angeles a 2-0 lead.

The Indians got a run back in the third inning, which began with Robertson hitting a double into the left-field corner. Kipnis and Francisco Lindor both grounded out, but Michael Brantley lined a single to right field, scoring Robertson, cutting the Dodgers lead to 2-1.

Cleveland tied it in the fifth inning when Roberto Perez led off the inning by lining his first home run of the year into the left-field bleachers, a drive estimated at 430 feet.

"It was not a great night for me. My fastball command was erratic," Kershaw said. "I think every hit I gave up was on my fastball. I usually don't fall behind (in the count) using my fastball, but it happened a lot tonight."

Manager Dave Roberts said Kershaw was still good enough. "It's a credit to him that when he doesn't have his best stuff he was still able to keep us in the game," Roberts said.

NOTES: The Indians will bring up RHP Mike Clevinger and LHP Ryan Merritt from Triple-A Columbus to start the two games of their doubleheader Saturday in Minnesota. ... RHP Corey Kluber will start Tuesday for the Indians. In 16 career interleague starts, Kluber is 11-3 with a 2.34 ERA. ... Dodgers 1B Adrian Gonzalez was placed on the disabled list with lower back discomfort. To replace him on the roster, the team activated Joc Pederson off the 7-day concussion disabled list. ... Prior to Tuesday night, the last time the Dodgers and Indians played in Cleveland was on June 15, 2003, a 4-3 victory for the Dodgers, whose leadoff hitter was current manager Dave Roberts.

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