Former Indian Millwood Proves To Be Too Tough

Kevin Kouzmanoff jogs out his second homer.

Kevin Millwood showed the Indians and their fans what they already knew -- he's still a dominant pitcher. The right-hander flirted with a perfect game and pitched eight fine innings to help the Texas Rangers to a 5-2 victory Sunday over his former team. That stopped Cleveland's five-game winning streak. Rookie phenom Kevin Kouzmanoff ended the perfecto with his second homer in the fifth inning.

Saturday night, Kouzmanoff became the first Major Leaguer in history to hit a grand slam on the first pitch he saw in his career.

On Sunday, Millwood retired the first 14 Indians to come to bat until Kouzmanoff took him deep with two outs in the fifth.

Kouzmanoff again was in the lineup as DH Travis Hafner missed his second straight game with a bruised right hand -- suffered when hit by a pitch Friday night.

Ironically, that came with the bases loaded. Hafner has six grand slams this season, tied for the all-time record with Don Mattingly, who slammed six in 1987 for the New York Yankees.

Then Kouzmanoff, as Hafner's replacement, hit his slam on Saturday.

Paul Byrd (9-7) just about matched Millwood pitch for pitch for six innings. Then it all came apart.

Byrd allowed three soft singles to load the bases in the seventh. One run scored on a fielder's choice grounder to tie the score. Michael Young followed with a sharp single to center to score two more.

"Paul threw very well," manager Eric Wedge told reporters. "This is a tough park and a tough lineup. They got three or four hits in that one inning, but for the most part, they were just hitting holes, balls that were just out of reach."

Fernando Cabrera came on and the right-hander, who had not allowed a run in his previous eight relief appearances, promptly served up a two-run homer to Mark Teixiera.

Millwood (14-9) allowed a two-out double to victor Martinez and then issued his only walk, to Jhonny Peralta in the top of the seventh. He came back to get three quick outs in the eighth and finished with 10 strikeouts.

"He was outstanding," Wedge said of Millwood. "He was aggressive, he threw hard and he mixed his pitches. We weren't able to get anything going against him."

On April 29, Millwood also beat the Indians when he allowed only two hits over seven innings.

Grady Sizemore reached on an error by Young at shortstop in the ninth, took second on indifference, and scored on a single by Martinez.

Andrew Brown (3.00 ERA) allowed only one walk and struck out two over the final 1 1/3 innings for Cleveland.

The Indians failed to match their season-best winning streak of six games. Cleveland is 18-6 since Aug. 8. Recommended Stories

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