CLEVELAND — Talk about a power hitter.
The Indians brought out one of the biggest sluggers in sports on Friday before Game 2 as Cavaliers superstar LeBron James addressed the crowd and then cheered on the Indians during their 6-0 win over the Boston Red Sox.
Wearing a blue throwback Cleveland uniform from the 1970s and a red cap, James, who led the Cavs to an NBA title in June, walked onto the field shortly before the first pitch along with several of his teammates.
Standing near home plate, James whipped up the home crowd.
“We’re here for these guys over here,” James said, pointing toward the Indians in their dugout. “Just like you guys were behind our back throughout our championship run, we all have to rally together for their championship run. Always believe something, Cleveland.
“It’s always us against the world. Cleveland against the world — Let’s Go!”
With James on hand, Corey Kluber pitched seven shutout innings and Lonnie Chisenhall hit a three-run homer in Cleveland’s win, giving the Indians a 2-0 lead in the series.
James, who once caused a stir by coming to a 2007 playoff game in Cleveland against New York wearing a Yankees cap, has been backing the Indians all season. The Akron native attended a game earlier this season and has felt a kinship with the Indians players, who supported him as the Cavs won the city’s first pro sports championship since 1964.
The Indians appreciate James’ backing.
“You got a guy as big as he is in stature to come out and support us and hype the fans up, you saw the response,” second baseman Jason Kipnis said. “It worked. I love when the other teams go and support everyone else. I know we try to go and see Cavs games. It’s one big city.”
After serving as the pregame master of ceremonies, James watched the game in a luxury suite with teammates Kevin Love, Channing Frye, Richard Jefferson, Tristan Thompson, James Jones and free agent J.R. Smith, who is in negotiations to re-sign with the Cavs.
The players mugged for the camera when they were shown on the ballpark’s giant scoreboard and James busted out some dance moves to the crowd’s delight.