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Finally! Indians top K.C., stop skid



Published: Tue, July 19, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Cliff Lee got his first complete game with the Tribe's rain-shortened victory.

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Cliff Lee's first career complete game will have an asterisk -- a very soggy one.

Lee pitched five innings and was credited with his first career complete game, and Ben Broussard homered as the Cleveland Indians snapped a five-game losing streak with a rain-shortened 6-2 win over the Kansas City Royals on Monday night.

The game was called with one out in the bottom of the fifth inning following two rain delays.

Lee was unaware that he will now have a complete game on his pitching resume.

"It's not a real complete game, but I'll take it," Lee said with a laugh.

Lee (10-4) allowed two runs and four hits in five innings, long enough to get a complete game in his 63rd career start. The left-hander struck out seven, including the side in the fifth, seconds before heavy thunderstorms stopped play for 27 minutes.

The teams came back out for 11 minutes when a second system of rain pushed through, causing a 1-hour, 23-minute stoppage before the umpires called it.

David DeJesus homered leading off the first for the Royals, who jumped to a 2-0 lead but couldn't do anything more for starter D.J. Carrasco (4-4).

Struggling

It was the first win since the All-Star break for the Indians, who desperately needed a victory after being embarrassed and swept in a four-game weekend series by the Chicago White Sox.

But facing a team more their size, the Indians, who held a players-only meeting beforehand, won for just the second time in 11 games since July 5.

"It wasn't anything bad," Lee said of the pregame chat. "We left it so everyone could have their say and that was that."

Jhonny Peralta had three hits and Victor Martinez scored three runs for the Indians.

Broussard halted Cleveland's five-game homerless drought in the third inning with a two-run homer, his 10th, to make it 5-2. Broussard's shot over the right-field wall was the Indians' first home run since the break and their first ball to clear the outfield fences in 53 innings.

It was enough damage to finish off Carassco, who allowed five runs and eight hits in 2 1/3 innings -- his shortest outing of 2005.

Following the first delay, the Indians made it 6-2 in the fifth on Jody Gerut's infield RBI single off left-hander Jimmy Gobble.

Gerut was just 1-for-24 (.042) this season against lefties before dribbling a ball to the right side that second baseman Joe McEwing stopped with a slide, but he couldn't recover quick enough to get off a throw.

Strange inning

In one of their strangest innings this season, the Indians scored two runs in the first and had two runners thrown out at the plate. Crisp had an RBI groundout and Peralta hit a run-scoring double.

Sizemore's sacrifice fly in the second made it 3-2, giving the Indians their first lead in 42 innings.

The Indians were without designated hitter Travis Hafner, who hasn't played since getting hit in the mouth with a pitch by Chicago's Mark Buehrle on Saturday. Hafner was still feeling dizzy following the beaning. He is expected to play Tuesday.

Hours after being named the AL's co-player of the week, DeJesus got an early jump on the competition for next week when he hit Lee's second pitch over the wall in right for his seventh homer.

The Royals added another run in the inning on Emil Brown's RBI single off Lee, but the left-hander recovered nicely and sidestepped more serious trouble by striking out Angel Berroa and John Buck with two on.

"Once he got through the first inning he was completely different," DeJesus said of Lee. "He was able to get all his pitches over and put them where he wanted to."

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.




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