The Indians loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the fourth inning but couldn’t break through for a run. They had runners at first and third with no outs in the fifth inning but yet again came up empty.
Wasted chances has been the theme so far for host Cleveland in this American League Wild Card Game.
The Rays scored one run in the third inning on a Delmon Young solo shot and two runs in the fourth inning with a two-out Desmond Jennings double. Indians starter Danny Salazar was lifted in the fifth. Rays starter Alex Cobb has thrown six scoreless.
Tampa Bay leads 3-0 as the bottom of the seventh gets underway at Progressive Field.
The Twins have reportedly signed free agent shortstop Erick Aybar to a minor-league deal, LaVelle E. Neal III of the Star Tribune reported Friday. FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman adds that the deal comes with a potential $1.25 million if Aybar reaches the majors, with additional incentives based on plate appearances. He’ll be able to opt out on March 27. The team has yet to confirm the signing.
Aybar, 34, is now four years removed from his career year in 2014. He’s been in a state of steady decline since then, slashing just .234/.300/.348 with seven home runs and 11 stolen bases over 370 plate appearances for the Padres in 2017. His poor performance wasn’t helped by a fractured left foot, either, which cost him almost six weeks on the disabled list.
Still, the Twins see something promising in the veteran infielder, and reportedly intend to use him as another utility option this spring. Per Neal, Aybar will join fellow backup infielders Eduardo Escobar and Ehire Adrianza and may even (temporarily) take over for Miguel Sano at third base if Sano isn’t able to shape up for the role by Opening Day.