CLEVELAND (AP) — Edwin Encarnacion hit a grand slam in the 11th inning as the Cleveland Indians, who wasted a seven-run lead, beat the Los Angeles Angels 11-7 on Tuesday night for their fifth straight win.
Encarncion’s shot into the left-field bleachers off Bud Norris (1-3) capped a strange night for the Indians, who led 7-0 after two innings.
But Cleveland couldn’t do anything until the 11th, which began with rookie Bradley Zimmer drawing a leadoff walk and stealing second. Zimmer, who hit a grand slam in Cleveland’s seven-run second, moved up when Norris unleashed a wild pitch while walking Francisco Lindor.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia then walked Michael Brantley and pulled in a fifth infielder before Encarnacion drove Norris’ first pitch into the stands.
When he reached the plate, Encarnacion was doused with water and talcum powder as the Indians celebrated their second walk-off win in four games.
The homer put Encarnacion over 1,000 career RBIs.
Dan Otero (2-0) got the win, working out of a jam in the 11th by retiring Albert Pujols on a hard comebacker with a runner at third and two outs. Otero was the final reliever to leave Cleveland’s bullpen.
Zimmer had an eventful night. He connected for his first slam, stole a base and ran down Ben Revere’s drive to deep center for the final out in the 10th before crashing into the padded wall. Zimmer also got picked off first and made a poor defensive choice to help the Angels tie it in the sixth.
Michael Brantley also homered for the Indians, who have won 10 of 11 over the Angels.
Kole Calhoun hit a three-run homer and Luis Valbuena had a two-run shot for Los Angeles.
Down 7-0 after two innings, the Angels fought back with four runs in the third, two in the fifth and then tied it in the sixth.
Kaleb Cowart, recalled from Triple-A Salt Lake City earlier in the day, singled leading off and Yunel Escobar followed with a sinking liner to center that Zimmer should have played on the hop. Instead, he tried to make a diving catch and the ball skipped past him and rolled to the wall, allowing Cowart to score from first and tie it 7-all.
Zimmer’s slam capped a seven-run second inning off Angels starter Jesse Chavez, who threw 11 straight balls to walk Cleveland’s No. 7-8-9 hitters.
The outburst began with back-to-back doubles by Encarnacion and Jose Ramirez before Chavez lost his release point and made things easy for the Indians. He walked Giovanny Urshela to force in the Indians’ second run before Zimmer took matters into his own hands.
Zimmer pounced on a grooved a 3-1 pitch and drove it 435 feet to right-center, pausing to admire his shot before rounding the bases.
One out later, Brantley hit his seventh homer, a 420-foot shot to make it 7-0.
Angels: RHP Alex Meyer (shoulder inflammation) underwent an MRI that revealed no structural damage. He was placed on the 10-day disabled list Monday, but no timetable has been set for his return.
Indians: 2B Jason Kipnis ran the bases for the first time as he recovers from a strained right hamstring. Manager Terry Francona said Kipnis could play in a minor league rehab game as soon as this weekend. Kipnis has been on the DL since July 9.
Angels: RHP Ricky Nolasco has the second-most losses in the American League with 11. He is 0-2 with a 10.66 ERA over his last three starts, totaling just 12 2/3 innings.
Indians: RHP Carlos Carrasco is 2-0 with a 1.80 ERA in eight previous appearances — four starts — against the Angels.