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Reyes 2 HRs, drive almost hits bicyclist, Indians top Cards

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Cleveland Indians' Franmil Reyes watches his solo home run in the third inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals, Wednesday, July 28, 2021, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

CLEVELAND – Some batters hit for the cycle. Indians slugger Franmil Reyes nearly hit the cyclist.

Reyes homered twice, the first a second-inning blast that bounced out of Progressive Field and almost dinged a bicyclist pedaling on a street next to the park, and Cleveland beat the St. Louis Cardinals 7-2 on Wednesday.

Reyes’ leadoff homer in the second glanced off the pedestrian bridge in left field and landed on the plaza area between the ballpark and Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse. The ball traveled an estimated 446 feet.

The homer got the attention of his teammates who marveled over the distance of the blast while watching from the dugout.

“It’s ridiculous,” Indians starter Zach Plesac said. “He sent that ball out of the stadium. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that. That’s incredible.”

Reyes said he hasn’t hit a ball out of the park during batting practice and was unaware the home run almost hit someone riding a bike. He does take note of the response he sees from his teammates as he rounds the bases after a long home run.

“After each homer I like to go to the iPad and look at their reaction and some of them were putting their hands right here (behind their heads),” he said. “It was pretty awesome.”

Reyes wasn’t done. He finished off Cleveland's three-homer inning in the third with his 19th of the season, a 421-foot drive to center.

César Hernández and José Ramírez also homered in the inning for Cleveland, which avoided dropping under .500 for the first time since May 1. Hernández’s two-run homer gave Cleveland a 3-2 lead. He had a sacrifice fly in the fourth.

Kwang Hyun Kim (6-6) gave up all four homers and lost for the first time since June 20, breaking a stretch of wins in five straight starts. Reyes’ second homer ended the day for Kim, who allowed five runs in 2 2/3 innings.

Plesac (6-3) gave up two runs in five innings. He made his fourth start since coming off the injured list July 8 after missing six weeks with a broken right thumb.

St. Louis third baseman Nolan Arenado was hit on the right forearm by a pitch from Pleasc in the fifth. The All-Star third baseman walked around the home plate area and slowly went to first despite being in obvious pain while talking with manager Mike Shildt and a trainer.

Arenado took the field for defense in the bottom of the inning but was removed. The Cardinals announced he had a bruised forearm and is day to day.

Shildt said Arenado is optimistic that he’ll play Friday when the Cardinals open a three-game series against Minnesota as the pitch appeared to strike him on the back of his arm.

“Thankfully, it looks like it got mostly meat,” Shildt said. “The off-day tomorrow will help. He’ll get treatment. It got him pretty good.”

Dylan Carlson led off the third with his 11th homer. Yadier Molina’s two-out single gave St. Louis a first-inning lead, but Kim's short outing was costly.

“He wasn't able to get the ball on the ground,” Shildt said. “His velocity was down a tick. He lived up top too much and in the air a lot.”

PITCHING UPDATE

Indians pitchers Shane Bieber and Aaron Civale are on throwing programs but no timetable has been established for their return. Bieber (sore right shoulder) has been playing catch and has yet to throw off the mound. The reigning AL Cy Young winner hasn’t pitched since June 13. Civale (sprained right middle finger) threw off the mound Tuesday and appears closer to returning. He last pitched June 20.

“These are guys that are very important to us,” pitching coach Carl Willis said. “Sometimes it’s hard to be patient because we want them back so badly and they want to be back so badly, but we have to make sure we do it right.”

MILLER TIME

Cardinals left-hander Andrew Miller, making his first appearance in Cleveland since 2018, received a long ovation when he entered the game in the eighth inning. Miller was a key member of the Indians' bullpen in 2016 when Cleveland came within a game of winning the World Series.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Cardinals: RHP Jack Flaherty, who has been on the injured list since June 1 with an oblique strain, is expected to make another rehab start next week. He struck out three in two scoreless innings Tuesday for Triple-A Memphis. Shildt said Flaherty threw 45 pitches, including 14 in the bullpen after leaving the game.

UP NEXT

Cardinals: LHP Wade LeBlanc (0-2) will start Friday.

Indians: RHP J.C. Mejia (1-6), who has lost his last four starts, will pitch against the Chicago White Sox on Friday.

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