Kole Calhoun’s towering three-run homer capped Cleveland’s five-run seventh inning as the Guardians rallied for an 8-3 win on Tuesday night and cooled off the Los Angeles Dodgers, who lost for just the third time in August.
Calhoun, who was acquired earlier this month in a trade from the NL West leaders for cash, connected off reliever Caleb Ferguson as the Guardians came from behind to stun baseball’s hottest team.
The Dodgers are 17-3 in August and 25-10 since the All-Star break.
Oscar Gonzalez also homered for the Guardians, who trailed 3-2 entering the seventh after being held to six hits over 6 1/3 innings by Dodgers rookie starter Bobby Miller (7-3).
But Steven Kwan and José Ramírez hit two-out RBI singles off Ferguson and Calhoun, who spent roughly two months this season stuck at Triple-A Oklahoma City with the Dodgers, hit the left-hander’s first pitch barely over the wall in right to make it 7-3.
Another former Dodger, Guardians starter Noah Syndergaard, also had a satisfying night against Los Angeles.
Syndergaard, who was traded by the Dodgers to Cleveland on July 26 for infielder Amed Rosario, allowed three runs and four hits in six innings.
Sam Hentges (2-2), Trevor Stephan and Emmanuel Clase each pitched one inning as the Guardians held the Dodgers’ power-packed lineup to just six hits.
Obviously, the Dodgers know Syndergaard well and it didn’t take long for them to square up some of his pitches.
Mookie Betts, who came in batting .379 since June 28, opened the first with a single and stole second before Dodgers catcher Will Smith pounded Syndergaard’s first pitch into the left-field bleachers for his 17th homer.
Betts got things going again in the third when he singled, had another steal and scored on Freddie Freeman’s single.
The Guardians closed within 3-2 in the fourth when Gonzalez connected for his second homer — on an 0-2 pitch from Miller — and an RBI single by rookie Gabriel Arias.