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.
- Francisco Rodriguez re-signs with the Brewers 8
- If addiction is an illness — and it is — Josh Hamilton shouldn’t be suspended 267
- Pirates open to massive extension for Andrew McCutchen 16
- Report: Josh Hamilton had a relapse this offseason that “involved at least cocaine” 85
- Yankees don’t plan on having to pay A-Rod’s $30 million in home run milestone bonuses 49
- San Francisco — and all of California — will consider a smokeless tobacco ban that includes MLB parks 131
- Rob Manfred says a return to a 154-game season could happen one day 66
- Report: The Yankees were “fuming” at how A-Rod handled his early arrival to spring training 114
- If addiction is an illness — and it is — Josh Hamilton shouldn’t be suspended (272)
- San Francisco — and all of California — will consider a smokeless tobacco ban that includes MLB parks (131)
- Report: The Yankees were “fuming” at how A-Rod handled his early arrival to spring training (114)
- Cuban prospect Yoan Moncada reportedly signs with the Red Sox for $31.5 million, plus $31.5 million in penalties (106)
- Gregg Zaun says young players should be physically abused and hazed by veterans. So they can learn respect. (105)