In a foreboding tone, manager Terry Francona called Shane Bieber to his hotel room to deliver some important news on Cleveland’s day off. The faked sternness soon yielded to tears of joy — the second-year pitcher was going to be an All-Star.
First, he had to go pitch like one of the best.
Bieber went eight innings in 90-degree heat Saturday, and the Indians’ All-Stars made their mark in a 7-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, their fifth in a row at Great American Ball Park.
The Indians also got a pair of homers from Francisco Lindor, part of their four-player contingent for the All-Star Game in Cleveland on Tuesday. Roberto Perez had four hits, including a tie-breaking two-run shot in the eighth inning.
It was an ideal day for Bieber (8-3), who learned from his manager Friday that he’d been picked to replace Texas’ Mike Minor on the AL All-Star squad.
“I was pretty shocked and just really excited,” Bieber said. “I caught myself getting too excited. … I was just trying to calm myself down.”
Photo: Joe Robbins / Getty Images
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Couldn’t tell by the results. Bieber gave up four hits in eight innings — three by Yaisel Puig, who had a two-run homer.
The Indians are finally on a good run as they get ready to host the All-Star Game. They’ve won five in a row, matching their best win streak of the season.
Lindor hit his fourth leadoff homer of the season off Anthony DeSclafani. He added another solo shot in the fifth, a drive that deflected off the screen attached to the right field foul pole.
Padres 3, Dodgers 1: Hunter Renfroe and Manny Margot homered, and rookie Chris Paddack pitched shutout ball into the sixth inning for visiting San Diego. Kirby Yates earned his 29th save.
Twins 7, Rangers 4: Michael Pineda struck out a season-high nine over six efficient innings, Jason Castro had two hits and three RBIs, and host Minnesota beat Texas.
Orioles 8, Blue Jays 1: Andrew Cashner pitched seven strong innings to win his third straight start, Renato Nunez hit a two-run home run and visiting Baltimore easily topped Toronto.
Pirates 12, Brewers 2: Kevin Newman and Starling Marte each drove in three runs, leading host Pittsburgh over Milwaukee.
Nationals 6, Royals 0: Max Scherzer sustained a dominant stretch with seven strong innings, Kurt Suzuki homered and host Washington blanked Kansas City.
Rays 4, Yankees 3: Travis d’Arnaud hit a two-out homer off Chad Green in the bottom of the ninth inning, lifting host Tampa Bay over New York.
Marlins 5, Braves 4: Yadiel Rivera hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the fifth inning and visiting Miami got only its second win over the Braves this season in 11 tries. The Marlins’ struggling offense, shut out 1-0 in the series opener, had 15 hits, including homers by Harold Ramirez and Starlin Castro.
Red Sox 10, Tigers 6: Andrew Benintendi and Mookie Betts each finished a homer short of the cycle as visiting Boston beat Detroit. Benintendi went 4 for 6 with two singles, a double and a triple. Betts was 3 for 5 with a single, double, triple and walk.
Astros 4, Angels 0: Yuli Gurriel homered for the fourth straight game and Gerrit Cole pitched seven scoreless innings before two relievers completed the four-hitter, leading host Houston.
Mets 6, Phillies 5: Tomas Nido hit a three-run double that put host New York ahead to stay in testy victory that included four hit batters. Jeff McNeil, leading the majors in batting, had four hits for the fourth time this season.
Cubs 6, White Sox 3: Jon Lester pitched into the seventh inning, and the visiting Cubs beat All-Star Lucas Giolito and the crosstown White Sox. Cubs closer Craig Kimbrel hit a batter and walked one in the ninth inning, but he struck out Jose Abreu for his second save in three chances.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Indians-Shane-Bieber-pitches-like-the-All-Star-14076791.php.