In a foreboding tone, manager Terry Francona called Shane Bieber to his hotel room to deliver some important news on Cleveland’s day off. The faked sternness soon yielded to tears of joy — the second-year pitcher was going to be an All-Star.
First, he had to go pitch like one of the best.
Bieber went eight innings in 90-degree heat Saturday, and the Indians’ All-Stars made their mark in a 7-2 victory over the Cincinnati Reds, their fifth in a row at Great American Ball Park.
The Indians also got a pair of homers from Francisco Lindor, part of their four-player contingent for the All-Star Game in Cleveland on Tuesday. Roberto Perez had four hits, including a tie-breaking two-run shot in the eighth inning.
It was an ideal day for Bieber (8-3), who learned from his manager Friday that he’d been picked to replace Texas’ Mike Minor on the AL All-Star squad.
“I was pretty shocked and just really excited,” Bieber said. “I caught myself getting too excited. … I was just trying to calm myself down.”
Photo: Joe Robbins / Getty Images
Bieber gave up four hits in eight innings — three by Yaisel Puig, who had a two-run homer.
The Indians are finally on a good run as they get ready to host the All-Star Game. They’ve won five in a row, matching their best win streak of the season.
Lindor hit his fourth leadoff homer of the season off Anthony DeSclafani. He added another solo shot in the fifth, a drive that deflected off the screen attached to the right field foul pole.
Padres 3, Dodgers 1: Hunter Renfroe and Manny Margot homered, and rookie Chris Paddack pitched shutout ball into the sixth inning for visiting San Diego. Kirby Yates earned his 29th save.
Twins 7, Rangers 4: Michael Pineda struck out a season-high nine over six efficient innings, Jason Castro had two hits and three RBIs, and host Minnesota beat Texas.
Orioles 8, Blue Jays 1: Andrew Cashner pitched seven strong innings to win his third straight start, Renato Nunez hit a two-run home run and visiting Baltimore easily topped Toronto.
Pirates 12, Brewers 2: Kevin Newman and Starling Marte each drove in three runs, leading host Pittsburgh over Milwaukee.
Nationals 6, Royals 0: Max Scherzer sustained a dominant stretch with seven strong innings, Kurt Suzuki homered and host Washington blanked Kansas City.
Rays 4, Yankees 3: Travis d’Arnaud hit a two-out homer off Chad Green in the bottom of the ninth inning for host Tampa Bay.
Marlins 5, Braves 4: Yadiel Rivera hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the fifth inning and visiting Miami got only its second win over the Braves this season in 11 tries. The Marlins’ struggling offense, shut out 1-0 in the series opener, had 15 hits, including homers by Harold Ramirez and Starlin Castro.
Red Sox 10, Tigers 6: Andrew Benintendi and Mookie Betts each finished a homer short of the cycle as visiting Boston beat Detroit. Benintendi went 4-for-6 with two singles, a double and a triple. Betts was 3-for-5 with a single, double, triple and walk.
Astros 4, Angels 0: Yuli Gurriel homered for the fourth straight game and Gerrit Cole pitched seven scoreless innings before two relievers completed the four-hitter, leading host Houston.
Mets 6, Phillies 5: Tomas Nido hit a three-run double that put host New York ahead to stay in a testy victory that included four hit batters. Jeff McNeil, leading the majors in batting, had four hits for the fourth time this season.
Cubs 6, White Sox 3: Jon Lester pitched into the seventh inning, and the visiting Cubs beat All-Star Lucas Giolito and the crosstown White Sox. Cubs closer Craig Kimbrel hit a batter and walked one in the ninth inning, but he struck out Jose Abreu for his second save in three chances.
Diamondbacks 4, Rockies 2: Robbie Ray struck out eight in six innings and had an RBI single as host Arizona defeated Colorado.