Indianapolis Indians 13, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees 1
The Indianapolis Indians rolled into Frontier Field in Rochester, NY and got the party started. They cracked out 21 hits and 13 runs to overwhelm the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees tonight. Every member of the Indians’ line-up had at least one hit, and CF Jose Tabata posted 4 hits and 4 RBI, as the Indians scored one run in three different innings plus 4 runs in the 5th and 6 runs in the 9th.
Daniel Cabrera made the start for the Tribe and earned his 5th win, and his first victory since June 30th. He allowed one run on 4 hits and a walk, while striking out 5 Yankee batters. The run came in the bottom of the 1st inning, on a solo home run by SS Eduardo Nunez. Yankees’ 1B Kosuke Fukudome doubled to lead off the 3rd inning. After an out, Cabrera struck out DH Chris Dickerson, but a passed ball put Dickerson on first base. That was only a temporary problem, though, since 2B Corban Joseph popped out to Indians’ 3B Yamaico Navarro. It surprised Dickerson, who was doubled off first base to end the inning.
Cabrera began the 5th with a walk, but three consecutive fly outs left that runner on first. The Yankees hit back-to-back singles, by Joseph and Nunez, in the 6th. Cabrera also left those runners on base with a strikeout and a fly out. He threw a total of 98 pitches (60 strikes).
Daniel McCutchen relieved Cabrera to begin the bottom of the 7th. McCutchen retired 9 batters in a row, including 4 strikeouts — 3 perfect innings.
The Indians’ batters started out slowly, with just one hit over the first three innings — a single by Jose Tabata in the top of the 1st. They were trailing 1-0 going into the top of the 4th. With one out, 1B Matt Hague bounced a ground-rule double over the left-center field wall. A ground out moved Hague to third, and he scored when Yamaico Navarro singled up the middle. Tie score 1-1.
The Tribe got going in the 5th, scoring 4 runs. The first four batters reached base safely. C Jose Morales singled into left field. 2B Anderson Hernandez singled through the hole into right field, moving Morales to third. SS Chase d’Arnaud drove in Morales with a single into center. Then Tabata drove in both Hernandez and d’Arnaud with a double into right field. Hague grounded out on a ball tapped by the Yankees’ pitcher before it went on to shortstop, and that let Tabata score from third. Four runs, giving the Indians a 5-1 lead.
LF Christian Marrero added a run in the 6th inning with his first home run since joining the Indians — a blast over the right field wall. RF Brandon Boggs drove in another run in the 8th, when he followed Navarro’s third single of the game with a double down the left field line. With Boggs on second base, Morales reached base on an error, when 3B Brandon Laird bobbled, kicked, and bobbled a grounder. Boggs had to hold at second base on that play. Hernandez followed with a single into left, and Boggs raced around from second base. The throw in from LF Ronnier Mustelier was faster than Boggs had expected, and it was waiting for him a couple of steps from the plate. He was easily tagged out, but the Indians had increased their lead to 7-1.
The biggest explosion from the Tribe bats came in the top of the 9th, as the Indians sent 11 batters to the plate. Tabata greeted the new Yankees’ reliever with a line drive single into right field. Hague flied out, then DH Jeff Clement singled, and that was followed by Navarro’s line out to second. After the second out, six Indians’ batters reached base safely. Boggs singled to load the bases. A walk to Marrero forced in Tabata. Morales’ single drove in both Clement and Boggs. Hernandez bounced a single on the front of the mound, sailing over the head of the leaping Yankees’ pitcher and into center field. Morales scored on that hit. D’Arnaud also singled, and the Indians had the bases loaded again. Tabata’s second single of the inning drove in Morales and Hernandez, before a line out ended the party. The Indians had added 6 runs, for the 13-1 win.
With a total of 21 hits, Tabata had a double and three singles. Navarro, Hernandez, and Boggs had 3 hits each; d’Arnaud, Hague, and Morales had 2 hits each; Clement and Marrero each had “only” one hit. Clement was the only Indians’ hitter to not pick up an RBI. Tabata had 4, and Marrero and Morales had 2 RBI each. The Indians’ 21 hits represents a new season-high for the number of hits in a game. (The previous record was 19 hits, against the Rochester Red Wings at Victory Field on June 11th.) “Today was a nice game,” said Brandon Boggs after the game. “Everybody swung the bat really well.”
Indians’ Hitting Gem of the Game: You might say that there were 21 of them… Marrero had the only homer for the Indians. It was his first for the Indians — he’d had 4 homers in 68 games with Gwinnett before he was traded. The homer gave the Indians one more insurance run, and made their lead pretty solid in the middle of the game.
Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game: Brandon Boggs made an amazing catch in right field, at the wall. He’d had to race back towards the wall, and turning to look for the ball, he made the catch with a leap. A split second after he’d put the ball safely into his glove, Boggs crashed into the wall and landed on the ground — but with the ball still secure in his glove.
The other three teams in the International League Western Division all lost their games tonight. That increases the Indians’ lead over the Columbus Clippers to 10 games. The Toledo Mud Hens are in third place, 25 games behind the Indians, with the Louisville Clippers on their tails, 26 games behind in 4th place.
With the Yankees’ home stadium undergoing renovations, the “Empire State” Yankees have had to borrow other stadiums for their home games. When they face their fellow Northern Division opponents, they have “home” series in the opponents’ stadiums. For Western and Southern Division opponents, the Yankees have borrowed both Frontier Field in Rochester and Alliance Bank Stadium in Syracuse. They have also played a few games in Batavia, NY. The Batavia Muckdogs play in Dwyer Stadium, which holds 2600 fans. It’s about a 45-50 minute drive from Rochester. The Red Wings have been operating the Muckdogs for the past few years.