CLEVELAND — The Indians, boosted by a good-luck chicken and a pair of RBIs from both Yan Gomes and Ryan Raburn, beat the Baltimore Orioles 6-4 Wednesday night.
Cleveland pitcher Justin Masterson carried a live chicken on to the field for batting practice. The bird, supplied by clubhouse workers from an area farm, was a gift to reliever Cody Allen.
The chicken spent most of batting practice standing with Cleveland’s pitchers in front of the warning track in center field. Allen’s teammates gave him the nickname “Chicken Al” in spring training and the chicken has been named “Cody.”
The Indians moved a half-game past Baltimore in the chase for a playoff spot. Cleveland began the night 3½ games behind Tampa Bay for the second wild card.
Relievers Bryan Shaw (3-3), Allen, Joe Smith and Chris Perez, who recorded his 22nd save, combined to allow one hit in 4 1/3 innings.
Gomes broke a 4-4 tie with an RBI single in the fifth, when the Indians scored twice to go ahead for good. A wild pitch by Kevin Gausman (2-4) with the bases loaded scored the second run.
Cleveland scored four times in the first, but starter Zach McAllister couldn’t hold the lead.
Adam Jones hit a solo homer in the fourth. Manny Machado’s three-run homer tied it in the fifth.
Raburn’s two-run double, along with RBI singles by Gomes and Mike Aviles, got the Indians off to a quick start.
McAllister allowed four runs in 4 1/3 innings. Orioles starter Zach Britton lasted 3 1/3 innings in his first start since July 9. The left-hander, called up from Triple-A Norfolk on Monday, allowed four runs and six hits.
The Orioles finished 3-6 on their nine game trip against playoff contenders. They also lost two out of three in Boston and New York.
Jones was hit on the left arm by a pitch in the second. He was in obvious pain as he headed to first, where he was visited by manager Buck Showalter and a team trainer. The two spoke with Jones, who remained in the game.
The three-game series between teams chasing a playoff spot drew a total of 36,504 fans. Tuesday night’s turnout of 9,962 was the lowest September/October crowd in the history of Jacobs/Progressive Field, which opened in 1994.
McAllister, who struck out six, is 3-3 with a 4.53 ERA in nine starts since returning from a sprained right middle finger on July 22.
• Gomes batted in the fifth spot for the second time this season.