AMERICAN LEAGUE ROUNDUP : Indians Don’t Miss Belle in Beating Tigers

From Associated Press

Who needs Albert Belle?

The Cleveland Indians, beginning a seven-game stretch without their suspended slugger, got home runs from Paul Sorrento, Carlos Baerga and Manny Ramirez and defeated the Detroit Tigers, 6-2, on Monday night at Cleveland.

Belle, who leads the Indians with 35 home runs, 98 runs batted in and a .359 average, began his six-day, seven-game suspension for taking a corked bat to the plate July 15 in Chicago. The impact of his absence, however, was debatable because he has only a .174 career mark against Mike Moore, the Tigers’ starter.

“Obviously, you can’t replace Albert in the lineup,” said Sorrento, who turned the game around with a two-run homer in the seventh. “He’s too valuable, one of the best in the business right now. But I think the team was ready for the challenge. We’re just going to have to pick up the slack for six or seven games.”


Jason Grimsley struck out eight in 7 2/3 innings to help stop the Indians’ three-game losing streak. They pulled within 1 1/2 games of the AL Central-leading Chicago White Sox, who were idle.

Lou Whitaker homered, doubled and scored twice for the Tigers, who are 0-4 at Jacobs Field.

Grimsley (4-1) gave up two runs and six hits in 7 2/3 innings. Eric Plunk got the final out in the eighth, and Jeff Russell finished.

Baltimore 1, Minnesota 0--Cal Ripken became only the second major leaguer to play in 2,000 consecutive games, reaching the mark at Minneapolis.


Ripken got a standing ovation from the crowd of 27,712 when he came to bat in the first inning after it was announced that he was playing No. 2,000. He waved to the crowd, then waited a moment before taking off his helmet to acknowledge the appreciation.

Ripken, trailing only Lou Gehrig’s streak of 2,130 games, went 0-for-4. He made two nice plays at shortstop, spinning completely around after grabbing Jeff Reboulet’s grounder behind second base in the second inning and going deep in the hole to throw out Shane Mack to end the eighth.

Arthur Rhodes (2-5) pitched a seven-hitter a day after being recalled from triple-A Rochester. He was saved with two outs in the ninth when defensive replacement Mike Devereaux made a diving catch in center field on Matt Walbeck’s liner with a runner on first.

Rhodes, whose struggles had left him back in the minors, struck out four and walked one in the second shutout of his career.


Baltimore scored an unearned run on Mark McLemore’s single in the second against Pat Mahomes (8-5). Baltimore won for the fourth time in 13 games while Minnesota lost its fourth in a row.

New York 8, Milwaukee 3--Melido Perez gave up five hits in eight innings and Mike Gallego hit a two-run homer for the Yankees at Milwaukee.

Perez (9-3) overcame a wild third inning, when he hit Kevin Seitzer just below the left eye with a pitch. Seitzer left under his own power and was taken to a hospital. The Brewers said he suffered a sinus fracture.

Perez, who hasn’t lost since June 8, won his fourth consecutive decision, his sixth win in nine starts, striking out seven--including Greg Vaughn three times. Perez walked one and threw two wild pitches.


Gallego tied the score, 3-3, in the fifth inning with his sixth homer of the season, a two-run drive against Bill Wegman (8-4). Paul O’Neill’s sacrifice fly scored the go-ahead run.

Toronto 6-3, Boston 2-4--Mo Vaughn homered to cap a four-run first inning as the Red Sox won the nightcap to gain a doubleheader split at Boston.

Toronto won the first game as Joe Carter hit the 300th home run of his career and Pat Hentgen pitched a six-hitter for his sixth complete game.

In the second game, Nate Minchey--called up from the minors between games of the doubleheader--was helped by three double plays. Minchey (2-3) gave up eight hits in seven innings and lowered his earned-run average from 11.25 to 8.61.