ARLINGTON, TEXAS – Ron Washington remembers being impressed by Lonnie Chisenhall when the infielder was an up-and-comer with the Cleveland Indians.
The Texas manager hadn’t seen much of him since — until the last four days in the Rangers’ home ballpark.
Chisenhall had nine RBIs and three home runs in a five-hit game, Michael Brantley scored five times and the Indians beat the Rangers 17-7 Monday night.
“He disappeared for a couple of years,” Washington said. “I guess he figured it out. At least he figured it out against us. He just wasn’t missing. Breaking balls, fastballs, it didn’t matter.”
The only other nine-RBI game in Cleveland history was by Chris James in a 20-6 victory over Oakland on May 4, 1991.
Chisenhall, who had the second multihomer game of his career, finished 10-for-17 with four homers and 13 RBIs in a trip to Texas that ended with Cleveland’s first road winning streak of the season.
“I know a day like today is kind of a once-in-a-lifetime thing,” said Chisenhall, who raised his batting average to .385 but needs more plate appearances to quality for the league lead. “I’m enjoying it as much as I can. I don’t know the history of it, who’s done it in the past.”
The history is pretty exclusive.
Major League Baseball said it was the first time a player went 5-for-5 with three homers and nine RBIs, since the RBI became a statistic in 1920. He also is only the fourth big leaguer to have at least five hits, nine RBIs and three homers in a game — first since Boston’s Fred Lynn in 1975, according to STATS.
Before his third homer, Chisenhall and Jason Kipnis danced in the dugout together during a brief break after home plate umpire Jim Wolf was knocked out of the game when he was hit in the mask by a foul ball.
Maybe they knew what was coming.
“As hard as it is to beat those dance moves, his swing was prettier,” Kipnis said. “He’s attacking the ball right now, and he’s swinging at the right pitches and he’s learning about himself as a hitter. Right now, he’s in one of those zones when he attacks and he’s just not missing.”
The Indians won three straight in the four-game set after coming to the Lone Star State with the worst road record in the majors. They’re headed to Kansas City to continue the first of three 10-game trips this season.
Cleveland hit five homers, won for the ninth time in 10 games and pulled within two games of Detroit just three weeks after trailing by 10½.Chisenhall had two-run homers in the second and fourth innings before hitting a three-run shot down the right field line in the eighth to give the Indians a 17-6 lead.
It was his second homer off Texas reliever Scott Baker, who was trying to give the Rangers a long outing but allowed 11 hits and nine runs in five innings. Texas is winless in its last seven series at home.
White Sox 6, Tigers 5
In Chicago, Jose Abreu hit a two-run homer in a three-run fifth inning and the White Sox snapped a three-game losing streak with a victory over Detroit.
Gordon Beckham had three hits as Chicago bounced back from a sluggish trip to Southern California.
Miguel Cabrera, Victor Martinez and Eugenio Suarez homered for the AL Central-leading Tigers, who have dropped seven of nine.
Mariners 3, Rays 0
In St. Petersburg, Florida, Robinson Cano drove in two runs with a bases-loaded double and Seattle blanked Tampa Bay for the second straight game.
Five Mariners pitchers combined on a five-hitter. Seattle extended its scoreless streak to 19 innings and won for the eighth time in nine games.
The Rays have lost 13 of 14 and are saddled with the worst record in the major leagues at 24-41.
Orioles 4, Red Sox 0
In Baltimore, Bud Norris pitched eight innings of three-hit ball and Adam Jones hit one of the Orioles’ three home runs against Boston.
Nick Markakis and Ryan Flaherty also connected for the Orioles. Norris (5-5) struck out six and walked three while matching the longest outing of his career.
The Red Sox have lost six of seven after a season-high seven-game winning streak.
Blue Jays 5, Twins 4
In Toronto, Edwin Encarnacion hit a three-run homer in the first inning and Kevin Pillar singled home the winning run in the ninth to lift the hosts over Minnesota.
The first two batters of the game, Danny Santana and Brian Dozier, homered for the Twins off R.A. Dickey, but Encarnacion’s 20th of the season soon put Toronto ahead.
Angels 4, Athletics 1
In Anaheim, Mike Trout produced an RBI double and Garrett Richards had another impressive outing, leading the Angels over Oakland for their fourth straight victory.
Yankees at Royals — ppd.