Cleve­land’s streak be­comes his­tory

San Francisco Chronicle - - SPORTS - By Tom Withers Tom Withers is an Associated Press writer.

CLEVE­LAND — The Cleve­land In­di­ans can re­turn to clinch­ing their divi­sion and play­off prepa­ra­tions.

Cleve­land’s AL-record run was stopped at 22 games Fri­day night as the In­di­ans were beaten by Kansas City, which be­came the first team to con­quer the de­fend­ing league cham­pi­ons since Aug. 23.

Ja­son Var­gas (16-10) pitched into the sixth and Bran­don Moss home­red off Trevor Bauer (16-9) as the Roy­als ended base­ball’s long­est win streak in 101 years.

The In­di­ans fell four vic­to­ries shy of match­ing the over­all record held by the 1916 New York Gi­ants, a 26game string that in­cluded one tie.

“I think it was ap­pro­pri­ate. We haven’t lost a game in three weeks. We played a good game,” Cleve­land out­fielder Jay Bruce said. “It wasn’t like we got just blown out or any­thing.”

Af­ter a walk-off win in ex­tra in­nings on Thurs­day, the In­di­ans couldn’t muster an­other late rally Fri­day.

When Fran­cisco Lin­dor struck out with a run­ner on first to end it, the sell­out crowd gave the In­di­ans a pro­longed stand­ing ova­tion. Man­ager Terry Fran­cona brought Cleve­land’s play­ers out of the dugout to salute the fans.

The In­di­ans, who are al­ready as­sured a play­off spot, not only broke the A.L. record set by the 2002 “Money­ball” A’s, but they served no­tice that they’re the team to beat in the post­sea­son.

With one last chance in the ninth, the In­di­ans put the po­ten­tial ty­ing run on base be­fore Roy­als re­liever Mike Mi­nor struck out the side for his first pro save, fan­ning Lin­dor on a pitch in the dirt for the fi­nal out.

“What they did over there was amaz­ing. I mean, it’s ut­terly amaz­ing,” Roy­als man­ager Ned Yost said. “It’s just un­fath­omable for me that you can go three weeks with­out los­ing a game.”

On their way to mak­ing his­tory, the In­di­ans outscored op­po­nents 145-41, led in all but 12 of 207 in­nings, and hit 42 homers.

David Dermer / Associated Press

Cleve­land In­di­ans fans give the team a stand­ing ova­tion af­ter they fell short of the long­est win­ning streak in MLB his­tory, fin­ish­ing with 22 wins in a row.

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