- Associated Press - Sunday, June 21, 2015

CLEVELAND (AP) - Less than a week after the shortest start of his career, Alex Colome chased perfection. It just wasn’t enough to win.

The right-hander retired his first 16 batters and allowed one hit in seven innings, but David Murphy’s bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the ninth gave the Cleveland Indians a 1-0 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday.

Colome didn’t permit a baserunner until Michael Bourn’s infield single with one out in the sixth. His strong outing came after he lasted two innings and yielded six runs on seven hits in a 16-4 loss to Washington on Tuesday.

Colome hasn’t won in six starts since defeating Oakland on May 21.

“It was really nice to see him bounce back,” Rays manager Kevin Cash said. “Everything he did, it was like night-and-day different from his last start. Threw strikes, pounded the zone, had really good feel for the off-speed pitches.”

Murphy hit a 3-1 pitch from reliever Kevin Jepsen (1-5) to center field. Kevin Kiermaier made a strong throw home on one bounce, but catcher Curt Casali couldn’t hold onto the ball as Roberto Perez slid across the plate for Cleveland’s first walk-off win of the season.

“It looked like it was going to make it to me in the air, but it started to die,” Casali said of the throw. “When it’s a bang-bang play like that, I have to just stay there. As a catcher in that situation I’ve got to let the ball play me and sit there and wait for it and hopefully come up with the ball.”

Cleveland manager Terry Francona joked about the slow-footed Perez hustling home to score.

“It seemed like his legs got shorter as he was running,” Francona said. “That play was hold-your-breath time, for sure.”

Bourn hit a hard grounder behind first base in the sixth. The ball skipped off the glove of Jake Elmore, who was playing a couple of steps off the bag, and rolled to his right. Second baseman Logan Forsythe picked it up, but his throw to Colome covering the bag was late.

Cash agreed with the official scorer’s ruling of a hit.

“You don’t think about it during the game,” Colome said about his perfect start. “Today I was only thinking about throwing strikes, making quick outs and making good pitches.”

Cody Anderson, making his major league debut, kept the game scoreless for the Indians. Called up from Triple-A Columbus before the game, he struck out four and walked one, holding the Rays to six hits in 7 2-3 innings.

Tampa Bay had runners on first and second with one out in the seventh, but couldn’t capitalize. In the eighth, Kiermaier doubled with one out and went to third on a groundout. Francona pulled Anderson, who was given a standing ovation by the crowd of 20,847 as he walked to the dugout.

Marc Rzepczynski issued an intentional walk to Evan Longoria and struck out pinch-hitter Nick Franklin to end the inning. Cody Allen (1-2) pitched the ninth for the win.

“Played great today, just couldn’t manufacture that missing run,” Cash said.


Though they were unable to complete a sweep Sunday, the Rays went 4-1 on their road trip and have a 21-12 record away from Tropicana Field, the best mark in baseball.


Rays: Cash doesn’t know if RHP Erasmo Ramirez (strained groin) will make his next scheduled start. Ramirez left Saturday’s game in the fourth inning.

Indians: C Yan Gomes, who has been bothered by a sore neck, had a scheduled day off.


Rays: RHP Matt Andriese makes his fifth start of the season Monday night as Tampa Bay opens a three-game series at home against Toronto.

Indians: RHP Trevor Bauer, getting an extra day between starts, faces the Detroit Tigers on Monday night at Progressive Field.

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