CHICAGO (AP) — Bobby Bradley and Josh Naylor homered, helping the Cleveland Indians overcome the loss of Aaron Civale during a 4-0 victory over the Chicago Cubs on Monday night.
Civale, who leads the majors with 10 wins, exited with two out in the fifth inning because of a right middle finger injury. The right-hander had a 3-2 count on Eric Sogard when he was visited by manager Terry Francona and a trainer.
The loss of Civale would be a big blow to Cleveland, already missing ace Shane Bieber and right-hander Zach Plesac due to injuries.
Naylor finished with two hits as the Indians improved to 2-2 on a nine-game road trip. They moved within two games of the idle White Sox for the top spot in the AL Central.
Chicago lost for the sixth time in eight games, and Javier Báez was pulled by manager David Ross after the shortstop made an embarrassing mental mistake. Adbert Alzolay (4-6) permitted three runs over 4 2/3 innings in his return from the 10-day injured list after being sidelined by a blister on his right middle finger.
With one out in the fourth and Báez aboard after a fielder’s choice, Anthony Rizzo hit a fly ball to left field. Báez apparently thought there were two outs and was almost to third when he was doubled off first base, leading to a round of boos from the crowd of 32,934 at Wrigley Field.
Sergio Alcántara replaced Báez in the field and was unable to throw out Harold Ramirez on an infield single leading off the fifth. After Bradley bounced into a fielder’s choice, Naylor hit a drive to right-center for a two-run homer, making it 3-0.
Bradley connected in the second, and the Indians added another run in the eighth when Cesar Hernandez scampered home on a wild pitch by Tommy Nance.
After Civale was removed, Bryan Shaw (2-2) got four outs for the win. Nick Wittgren worked out of a jam in the seventh before Emmanuel Clase and James Karinchak each pitched an inning, finishing a six-hitter.
Cubs reliever Kyle Ryan was optioned to Triple-A Iowa to make room for Alzolay.
Indians: DH Franmil Reyes (left oblique strain) is scheduled to begin a rehab stint with Triple-A Columbus on Tuesday. Francona said Reyes will be re-evaluated when the team returns home after its road trip. … Plesac (broken right thumb) threw fastballs, changeups and sliders during a 30-pitch bullpen. He did not throw any curveballs. … Cs Roberto Perez (broken right ring finger) and Austin Hedges (concussion list) ran the bases and hit on the field before the game. … 3B José Ramírez (bruised left foot) returned to the starting lineup for the first time since he was hit by a pitch during Friday night’s 11-10 loss at Pittsburgh. He popped out in a pinch-hit appearance on Sunday.
Cubs: LHP Justin Steele (right hamstring strain) will throw another bullpen pretty soon, according to Ross. “Things are good,” the manager said. “He’ll be off on a kind of rehab soon.” … RHP Trevor Williams (appendectomy) will travel with the team to Los Angeles when it heads out on a 10-game trip this week. “If everything’s going well, he’ll be off to build up some innings soon, too,” Ross said.
Cubs right-hander Kyle Hendricks (9-4, 4.13 ERA) goes for his eighth straight win Tuesday night. Hendricks is 4-0 with a 2.96 ERA in June. Rookie right-hander Eli Morgan (0-1, 12.79 ERA) makes his third big league start for the Indians.
Jay Cohen can be reached at https://twitter.com/jcohenap