ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Zach McAllister shrugged off being struck in his pitching arm by a line drive to finish six solid innings and the Cleveland Indians held on to beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-2 on Monday night.
McAllister (4-1) appeared to get hit in the right arm above the elbow by Jeff Keppinger's RBI single in the fourth inning. He remained in the game to retire the next six batters and eight of the last nine he faced overall.
Shin-Soo Choo had a RBI double in the third after he had what initially was ruled a home run overturned by instant replay in the first for Cleveland.
Cleveland’s Zach McAllister works to the plate Monday.
The umpires huddled after Rays center fielder B.J. Upton signaled that the ball hit high off the wall instead of clearing it and bouncing back onto the field. Choo was sent back to second base and eventually scored on a passed ball that gave the Indians an early lead on Alex Cobb (4-6).
Choo scored again in the third when Jason Kipnis doubled to make it 3-0.
McAllister allowed one run and three hits before being replaced by Esmil Rogers, who yielded a first-pitch home run to Desmond Jennings leading off the seventh. A pair of two-out walks put the potential tying run in scoring position before the third Indians pitcher of the inning, Vinnie Pestano, came on to strike out Ben Zobrist.
Pestano fanned pinch-hitter Brooks Conrad to escape another jam with two men on in the eighth. Chris Perez worked a perfect ninth, earning his 26th save in 28 opportunities.
Pitching on seven days' rest, McAllister made his second consecutive start against the Rays. He retired 13 of the first 14 batters he faced against them at home on July 8, but wound allowing four runs and four hits over 5 2/3 innings and was not involved in the decision of a 7-6 loss.
The 24-year-old right-hander walked three and needed 41 pitches to get through the first two innings this time. He held the Rays hitless until B.J. Upton singled, leading off the fourth. Luke Scott followed with a single and Keppinger drove in Tampa Bay's first run when he lined a pitch that struck McAllister on his follow-through.
Cleveland's trainer examined the spot where McAllister said he was hit, and the pitcher remained in the game. He avoided further damage in the inning when Jennings bounced into a double play and Jose Molina grounded out.
Meanwhile, the Indians wasted several opportunities to build on their early lead. They loaded the bases with no outs, yet failed to score in the fourth and began the fifth with a double and walk only to strand a runner at third.
Cleveland was 2 for 11 with runners in scoring position through five innings and finished 2 for 12.