May 22, 2011, 4:32 PM EST
Asdrubal Cabrera, the American League’s best shortstop since day one this season, delivered two homers as part of a 5-for-5, five-RBI game as the Indians routed the Reds 12-4 and completed a three-game sweep Sunday.
Of course, it’s not likely to get him a start over Derek Jeter in the All-Star Game, but barring a big slump, he will make the team for the first time.
The Indians also got a nice game from Michael Brantley, who went 3-for-5 with a double, a steal and three runs scored as Grady Sizemore’s replacement in the leadoff spot. Primarily valued for his speed, on-base skills and defense, he’s been a very pleasant surprise in contributing three homers and 13 RBI in 18 games this month.
The Reds received homers from Joey Votto and Jay Bruce in the contest, but it wasn’t nearly enough to overcome an ugly outing from Edinson Volquez, who should have been pulled from the rotation earlier this month. Volquez, the team’s Opening Day starter, gave up seven runs — six earned — in 2 2/3 innings to raise his ERA to 6.35. He walked four today, giving him 38 walks in 51 innings for the season.
With the victory, the Indians moved to 29-15. They’re not only leading the AL Central by 7 1/2 games, but they’re 4 1/2 games up on the Yankees and Rays for the American League’s best record.
The Reds have lost five in a row to fall to 25-22. It’s their longest losing streak of this season, and it matches their longest from 2010.
- UPDATE: Mariners planning to offer nine years, $225 million to Robinson Cano 55
- MLB, NPB nearing new posting system agreement 9
- Report: Talks between the Mets and Curtis Granderson have “intensified” 31
- Yankees agree to seven-year, $153M contract with free agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury 159
- Marlins sign free agent catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia to three-year, $21 million contract 44
- Yankees agree to seven-year, $153M contract with free agent outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury (159)
- Report: Mariners willing to offer Robinson Cano a 10-year, $240 million deal (141)
- When will the Yankees regret the Jacoby Ellsbury contract? (98)
- Robinson Cano met with the Mariners in Seattle (86)
- Yankees’ Jacoby Ellsbury signing to pay big dividends… for now (80)