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Indians hand Harvey 3rd straight loss in 7-5 win over Mets

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CLEVELAND (AP) Indians manager Terry Francona was impressed watching New York Mets ace Matt Harvey mow down his team in the early going Saturday.

“That guy was carving us up for four innings,” Francona said.

Harvey retired his first 13 batters but things quickly changed in the fifth, and Cleveland beat New York 7-5 in handing Harvey his third straight loss to begin the season.

Cleveland scored twice in the fifth to take a 2-1 lead and added three runs in the sixth. Harvey (0-3) was charged with five runs in 5 2/3 innings.

“Early on, I was able to use pretty much every pitch,” he said. “After that, a lot of things fell apart. Nobody is more frustrated than I am now. There’s not much else to say.”

Jason Kipnis had an RBI double off Harvey and scored twice, and Mike Napoli drove in two runs.

Josh Tomlin pitched five solid innings for Cleveland after allowing a home run to the first batter he faced this season.

Francona thought the Indians came away with a team victory.

“I wanted us to win so bad because I wanted to come in here and brag about the way we played today,” he said.

Harvey recorded only one strikeout after the first. His ERA rose to 5.71, and he has allowed 20 hits and struck out nine in 17 1/3 innings.

Jose Ramirez tied the game with a double in the fifth and scored on Juan Uribe‘s RBI single. Kipnis’ run-scoring double and RBI singles by Napoli and Yan Gomes in the sixth finished Harvey.

Napoli drove in another run with a seventh-inning double.

Tomlin, who had his first two starts pushed back because of inclement weather, gave up Curtis Granderson‘s leadoff homer.

“I’ve given up quite a few home runs in my career, so I knew at that point it was just bear down, and our guys have been swinging the bats pretty well, so keep it there and let them come back,” Tomlin said.

The right-hander then blanked New York before being removed prior to the sixth inning because of a cramp in his right hamstring.

Tomlin allowed four hits, struck out six and didn’t walk a batter. He hadn’t thrown in a competitive situation since a spring training game on March 29, but as the fifth starter Tomlin knows he’s the one who is going to get skipped on occasion.

“It’s not frustrating,” he said. “I completely understand it. Weather situations, you can’t really control. I knew I was getting a chance to start, but it was a matter of when.”

Cody Allen got four outs for his third save.

Yoenis Cespedes and Neil Walker homered for the second straight day in the eighth. Cespedes hit a three-run shot for the Mets, and Walker had a solo homer off Bryan Shaw.

Harvey struck out the side on 10 pitches in the first and was still in control until Carlos Santana drew a one-out walk in the fifth. Santana stole second and scored on Ramirez’s two-out hit that carried over the head of center fielder Alejandro De Aza and landed on the warning track.

Uribe lined a single to left, giving Cleveland the lead.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Mets: C Travis d'Arnaud was removed after being hit on the left elbow in the seventh inning by a pitch from Zach McAllister. The team announced X-rays were negative and d’Arnaud has a bruise.

Indians: OF Michael Brantley (right shoulder surgery) was 0 for 3 with a walk on a rehab assignment at Double-A Akron. OF Lonnie Chisenhall (sore left wrist), also rehabbing with Akron, drew a walk, scored a run and was hitless in three at-bats.

UP NEXT

Mets: LHP Steven Matz allowed a career-high seven runs in a career-low 1 2/3 innings in his only start of the season, a 10-3 loss to the Marlins on Monday.

Indians: RHP Corey Kluber lost his first two starts, allowing seven runs in 13 innings. He won his only career appearance against the Mets in 2013.

Skaggs Case: Federal Agents have interviewed at least six current or former Angels players

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The Los Angeles Times reports that federal agents have interviewed at least six current and former Angels players as part of their investigation into the death of Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs.

Among the players questioned: Andrew Heaney, Noé Ramirez, Trevor Cahill, and Matt Harvey. An industry source tells NBC Sports that the interviews by federal agents are part of simultaneous investigations into Skaggs’ death by United States Attorneys in both Texas and California.

There has been no suggestion that the players are under criminal scrutiny or are suspected of using opioids. Rather, they are witnesses to the ongoing investigation and their statements have been sought to shed light on drug use by Skaggs and the procurement of illegal drugs by him and others in and around the club.

Skaggs asphyxiated while under the influence of fentanyl, oxycodone, and alcohol in his Texas hotel room on July 1. This past weekend, ESPN reported that Eric Kay, the Los Angeles Angels’ Director of Communications, knew that Skaggs was an Oxycontin addict, is an addict himself, and purchased opioids for Skaggs and used them with him on multiple occasions. Kay has told DEA agents that, apart from Skaggs, at least five other Angels players are opioid users and that other Angels officials knew of Skaggs’ use. The Angels have denied Kay’s allegations.

In some ways this all resembles what happened in Pittsburgh in the 1980s, when multiple players were interviewed and subsequently called as witnesses in prosecutions that came to be known as the Pittsburgh Drug Trials. There, no baseball players were charged with crimes in connection with what was found to be a cocaine epidemic inside Major League clubhouses, but their presence as witnesses caused the prosecutions to be national news for weeks and months on end.