Series: Game 2 of 2

Cleveland won 2-0

Game 1: Tuesday, May 14
Baltimore 5Final
Cleveland 6
Game 2: Wednesday, May 15
Baltimore 1Final
Cleveland 3
Game 3: Thursday, May 16
Baltimore Postponed

Orioles 1

(18-21, 9-12 away)

Indians 3

(19-20, 11-7 home)

    7:05 PM ET, May 15, 2002

    Progressive Field, Cleveland, Ohio 

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    CLE 10000002 - 3 - -

    W: B. Colon (5-3)

    L: R. Bauer (1-1)

    S: B. Wickman (8)

    Colon tosses eight solid innings in Indians' win

    CLEVELAND (AP) -- Bartolo Colon found that sometimes it's just as good to be overprotective as overpowering.

    Bartolo Colon

    Colon, who blew a win last week when he gave up three late-inning homers, pitched eight strong innings and Russell Branyan finally delivered with the bases loaded to give the Cleveland Indians a 3-1 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday night.

    Colon (5-3) allowed one run -- Chris Singleton's homer -- and seven hits as the Indians followed a dramatic win with a more traditional one in handing the Orioles their fourth straight loss.

    The right-hander had blown a 3-0 lead in Kansas City last week, giving up solo homers in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings before losing 5-3.

    He wasn't going to make the same mistake.

    "I was careful," Colon said. "I didn't want to make any mistakes with the score 1-1. Any mistakes and we're going to lose. I had a plan with every pitch I made."

    Branyan hit a sacrifice fly during a crazy eighth inning off Rick Bauer (1-1) when the Indians snapped a 1-1 tie.

    Cleveland loaded the bases on two singles, a passed ball and a walk before Branyan, who had been 0-for-6 with the bases loaded and had left 14 runners in scoring position in those spots this season, hit his sacrifice fly to deep center.

    The Indians entered batting just .156 (5-for-32) with the bases loaded.

    Cleveland added a run in the inning when Jim Thome scored on Bauer's wild pitch.

    "I was garbage that inning," Bauer said. "The passed ball killed me. I threw a slider 10 feet outside. It just wasn't there. It's just garbage, terrible."

    Bob Wickman pitched the ninth for his eighth save as Cleveland improved to just 3-18 in when scoring three runs or less.

    "We finally got a couple breaks," said Omar Vizquel, who had two hits and is batting .443 (27-for-61) in his last 17 games. "That was a good win for us. We were patient and Bartolo was great again."

    One of the AL's premier power pitchers, Colon didn't record a strikeout until the eighth when he fanned Mike Bordick. Colon hadn't struck out any of the previous 37 batters he faced before getting Bordick.

    After giving up a single to Singleton, Colon then struck out David Segui to end the inning and pumped his fist as he left the mound.

    Colon has worked into the eighth inning in five of his nine starts, and has allowed just seven runs in his last five outings to lower his ERA to 2.77.

    "When I first came up, he threw 100 mph, but it was straight," Orioles second baseman Jerry Hairston said of Colon. "Now, he's throwing 94-95 and he's running it, sinking it and cutting it a little bit. That's tough. He's a great pitcher."

    Singleton tied it 1-1 in the sixth with a leadoff homer, his first in 123 at-bats this season and first with Baltimore since coming over in a trade with Chicago this winter.

    Colon grooved a 2-0 fastball to Singleton, who hit it into the seats in right-center.

    Vizquel, whose RBI double ignited Cleveland's four-run ninth inning rally on Tuesday, led off the first with a double off rookie starter Rodrigo Lopez and moved up on a groundout.

    With two outs, Vizquel, who was thrown out trying a straight steal of home against the Orioles last week, was dancing off the bag at third when Lopez attempted to pick him off.

    But Lopez's throw was nowhere close to the base, sailing over third baseman Tony Batista's head and down the third-base line, allowing Vizquel to score.

    "I always try to do that," Vizquel said. "I'll try to make a little break and get the pitcher's attention. Veteran pitchers never fall for that. But sometimes it works."

    Game notes

    Lopez's no-decision means he can still become the first Orioles rookie to start a season 6-0. Only three Baltimore rookies have opened 5-0 -- Lopez, Rocky Coppinger (1996) and Ben McDonald (1990). ... Indians RHP Charles Nagy will make his first start since last Aug. 17 on Saturday in the second game of a day-night doubleheader against Kansas City. Nagy was Cleveland's steadiest starter for nearly a decade before hurting his elbow. He's pitched in long relief this season. ... Indians 2B Ricky Gutierrez has grounded into an AL-high 10 double plays. ... Segui was back in the lineup after missing three games with an injured left wrist.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press