Smoke signals

Smoke signals

Smoke signals
• Michael Brantley's solo home run in the second inning Thursday night was his second long ball in as many days. Entering Friday, the center fielder had only one other homer all season -- June 6 at Detroit.

• Aaron Cunningham's perfect throw from left field in the eighth inning on Thursday was the Indians' second assist from left field in as many days. On Wednesday, Johnny Damon -- a guy not known for having a strong arm -- threw out the Angels' Albert Pujols when he attempted to stretch a single into a double. Cunningham's play on Thursday was even more important because it eliminated a baserunner at a key point in a big game.

"That was huge," said setup man Vinnie Pestano, who was pitching at the time. "Obviously, you're sitting there hoping it just drifts a couple more inches. When it lands on the line like that, you're kinda deflated. It's easy to watch that ball go foul and pick it up, and kind of nonchalantly hose it in. To come up firing and doing that, it was a great play."

• Travis Hafner's home run in the eighth inning on Thursday night was his 96th career homer at Progressive Field. Hafner's total ranks him third all-time at the venue, trailing only Jim Thome (188) and Manny Ramirez (132).