Back-To-Back Homers Trip Up Tribe

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Conference time

Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs� 4,�� Indianapolis Indians� 2 (box)

Back-to-back home runs in the 3rd inning was all the Iron Pigs needed to beat the Indians at Victory Field tonight.� Former Indianapolis Indian CF Chris Duffy smacked the first homer, and 2B Ozzie Chavez followed with the second.

The start of the game was delayed by nearly 90 minutes, though it wasn’t raining, and in fact the sun was shining for part of that time.� The sun was not shining in downtown Indianapolis at around 5 pm, though.� That’s when a sudden downpour sprang up with virtual no warning, catching the Victory Field ground crew without the tarp on the field.� By the time the tarp could be spread, quite a lot of water had gotten onto the infield.� Shortly before 6 pm, the tarp was pulled back and the crew went to work, first on the third base line and the third base and home plate areas, then later on the opposite side of the infield.� Several times in the process there was a conference on the field (photo above), including Lehigh Valley manager Dave Huppert, two of the umpires (black shirts on the left), head groundskeeper Joey Stevenson (red shirt), Indians’ assistant general manager Randy Lewandowski (white shirt), and Indians’ manager Frank Kremblas (far right).� It took the crew more than 2.5 hours to get the infield into a safe and playable condition, and the game began at about 8:30 pm.

IMG_4033Daniel McCutchen (photo) made the start for the Indians, and he generally looked sharp.� He threw 80 pitches (52 strikes) over 5 innings, and was only removed at that point because his turn in the batting order came around in the bottom of the 5th and the Indians had a runner on base and were trying to catch up.

McCutchen gave up 3 runs on 4 hits and a walk, and struck out 5 batters.� He retired the side in order only one time, in the 5th.� He worked around one base runner in the 1st (a walk to LF Domonic Brown), in the 2nd (a single by C Dane Sardinha), and the 4th (he hit Sardinha with a pitch).� The only inning that gave him any serious trouble was the 3rd.

That inning began with Iron Pigs’ pitcher JA Happ taking a 2-2 pitch down the right field line and into the corner for a double.� Happ is a lifetime .070 hitter, who has had one previous double, in 2009.� Chris Duffy took McCutchen’s next pitch for a ride over the wall in right-center field, for a no-doubt 2-run homer.� Then Ozzie Chavez also hit the first pitch from McCutchen ove rthe right field wall, to the right of where Duffy’s sailed out.� McCutchen took a deep breath, and struck out the next batter, Domonic Brown, then ended the inning with two ground outs.� After the homers, McCutchen faced only one batter over the minimum for the rest of his might, and that was when he hit Sardinha with a pitch.

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Indians Snatch Defeat From The Jaws Of Victory

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Brandon Moss is congratulated on his home run

Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs� 10,� Indianapolis Indians� 8 (box)

Yes, that’s what they did.� The Indianapolis Indians squandered a 7-run lead at Victory Field tonight. � They were one strike away from a win, when the Iron Pigs scored 3 runs to take the lead in the 9th inning, and a few minutes later, win the game.

IMG_4002Tribe starter Dana Eveland (photo) was going to be limited to a pitch count of about 75 pitches.� He used up 26 of them in the 1st inning.� Eveland ran the count full on the first two batters he faced, then went to a 2-2 count with an extra foul ball on the third batter.� Former Indy Indian (2007) LF Chris Aguila led off the inning with a soft single into center field.� 2B Ozzie Chavez took that full count, then took another ball, for a walk.� RF Domonic Brown (remember him from the Scottsdale Scorpions in the Arizona Fall League?� He was a teammate of Daniel Moskos, Donnie Veal, Brian Friday, Jose Tabata, and others) grounded sharply to the right side, and 2B Jim Negrych’s dive kept the ball from going into right field for a single.� Negrych knocked the ball down, then hopped up and threw to first base for the out on Brown, but Aguila moved to third and Chavez to second.� CF John Mayberry dropped a short fly into center field, driving in Aguila with the first run of the game.� With runners on the corners, Eveland caught a break — 3B Neil Sellers bounced to short, where SS Argenis Diaz started a 6-4-3 double play, Diaz to Negrych to 1B Jeff Clement, to end the inning.

All-Star pitcher Nate Bump made the start for the Iron Pigs.� Bump had recently spent a couple of weeks on the Disabled List, and it appeared that he is not back up to speed yet.� He began the bottom of the frame a little like the way Eveland started the top of the frame.� He ran the count full, then gave up a single on a big bouncer into center field by LF Kevin Melillo, then walked 3B Akinori Iwamura on another full count. The similarilty ended there, though.� Melillo tried to time Bump’s delivery and make an early jump for a stolen base, and was easily thrown out when Bump turned and saw him going.� It was an unfortunate mistake, because Melillo would have been to second base in just a moment when Iwamura walked, and Melillo could have scored when CF Alex Presley extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a double off the tip of 3B Sellers’ glove and into left field.� Instead, when Presley doubled, Iwamura went to third and the Indians had two runners in scoring position.

IMG_40111B Jeff Clement made it back-to-back doubles with a fly that bounced on the track at the base of the wall in the right field corner, scoring both Iwamura and Presley.� RF Brandon Moss slipped a low line drive through the hole and into right field, extending his hitting streak to 10 games.� Clement had been a little slow taking off from second base, maybe thinking that Iron Pigs’ RF Domonic Brown would get to the ball more quickly, and so he only reached third base instead of scoring on the play.� No matter, Jim Negrych brought in Clement with a sacrifice fly to center field.� New Tribe catcher Jason Jaramillo (photo) added the third double of the inning, a long fly to right field, where Brown made a leap — but had the ball bounce off his glove, off the top of the wall, and then down onto the track.� That brought Moss all the way around from first base, scoring the 4th run of the inning.� A strikeout ended the inning, but the Indians had a 4-1 lead, and Nate Bump had thrown 35 pitches.

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Van Every’s Three RBI Help Indians Hang On For The Win

Indianapolis Indians� 4,� Rochester Red Wings� 3 (box)

IMG_3987Three RBI from RF Jonathan Van Every (photo) gave the Indians the spark they needed to get the win this afternoon at Frontier Field in Rochester, NY, giving the Indians a split of the 4-game series with the Red Wings, and a 6-4 record on the extended road trip.

Like yesterday, today’s game involved the teams trading the lead and playing catch-up.� Tribe starter Mike Crotta had little trouble with the Red Wings in the first two innings, allowing only a single to C Jose Morales, when his grounder into right field hopped off Van Every’s glove, giving Morales the chance to reach second base.� Morales tagged and advanced to third base on the second of two fly outs, but Crotta left him standing there when he ended the inning with a ground out.

Crotta did get into more difficulty in the 3rd inning.� With one out, the next four batters reached base safely.� Crotta (photo below) walked CF Dustin Martin, then SS Trevor Plouff’s knocked a bloopy hit into center field, just out of reach of Tribe CF Alex Presley. Martin had to hold up to see whether or not Presley was going to make the catch, so he was only able to get as far as third base on the hit.� LF Matt Macri singled into left field, just past the diving 3B Akinori Iwamura, and Martin scored easily.� Plouffe stepped up to third base on the play, and then scored on RF Brian Dinkelman’s RBI single into right field.� Jose Morales was next, and he hit a line drive — but right at 1B Jeff Clement, for the second out of the inning.� Clement hesitated before throwing the ball to second base, which gave Macri the extra second needed to get back to the bag safely.� It turned out to not matter, as 2B Brendan Harris grounded into a force out to end the inning.� The Red Wings were ahead, 2-0.

IMG_3569The Tribe batters put two runners on base in each of the first three innings, but could not bring any of those six runners around to score.� Aki Iwamura and SS Brian Bixler both singled in the top of the 1st, while Alex Presley and C Luke Carlin walked in the 2nd, and Iwamura and DH Brandon Moss walked in the 3rd.�� The Red Wings’ pitching staff gave up a combined 11 walks in the game, but those four were wasted opportunities for the Indians.

Rochester starter Ryan Mullins pitched 2 innings, but when he came out to warm up prior to the top of the 3rd, he suddenly stopped and called out his training staff, then left the game.� He has been battling back problems recently, and they may have flared up again.

In the top of the 4th, Alex Presley and Jonathan Van Every took it upon themselves to erase the Red Wings’ lead.� Presley led off the inning with a triple over the head of CF Dustin Martin.� Presley thought about holding up at second base, but when Martin’s throw in from deep center field was coming in way high, Presley aggressively headed for third, and arrived there in plenty of time.� Van Every tied the game with a magnificent no-doubt-about-it 2-run homer over the right-center field wall.

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Morton Struggles But Two Big Innings Give Indians The Win

Indianapolis Indians� 10, �� Rochester Red Wings� 7 (box)

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Two 4-run innings helped the Indians overcome a shaky start by Charlie Morton, as the Indians held on to beat the Red Wings at Frontier Field in Rochester, NY tonight.� Twice the Indians took the lead and twice the Red Wings tied it up.� The third time the Tribe took a lead, the Red Wings rallied again and got within one run, before the Indians took a definitive lead with their second 4-run inning.� The two teams combined for 17 runs on 28 hits, and the Red Wings out-hit the Indians, 16 – 12.� CF Alex Presley (photo) led the Tribe with 3 hits, 3 RBI, and 3 runs scored.

Charlie Morton got into trouble almost with his first pitch.� The first two batters he faced, RF Brian Dinkleman and SS Trevor Plouffe both ripped line drives for two singles.� LF Jacque Jones also hit a long ball, but luckily, it was more of a fly, and it fell into the glove of Alex Presley in center field.� DH Jose Morales grounded to first, where 1B Brian Myrow turned and threw for the force out on Plouffe at second base.� That put runners on the corners, but Morton got a strike out on 2B Brendan Harris to get himself out of the jam.

IMG_3723DH Jeff Clement gave Morton (photo) a boost with a solo home run to lead off the top of the 2nd inning — over the right field wall, over the bullpen, over the high wall behind the bullpen, and into a right field picnic area.� Morton, now with a one-run lead, got right back into trouble in the bottom of the inning, with two singles and a walk.� A lead-off single by 3B D’Angelo Jimenez was erased with a double play, SS Argenis Diaz to 2B Jim Negrych to 1B Brian Myrow (6-4-3).� C Wilson Ramos singled into left field, and CF Dustin Martin walked and Morton again was working with two runners on base.� Dinkelman drove a liner into right field, but Tribe RF Brandon Moss made a long run and made the catch at his shoetops to end the inning and again get Morton out of a jam.

Morton’s luck did not hold in the 3rd.� Plouffe reached base on a throwing error by his counterpart at short, Argenis Diaz.� Morales singled, pushing Plouffe to second base, and Morton’s wild pitch put Plouffe on third.� Harris lifted a sacrifice fly, and Plouffe scored an unearned run to tie the game at 1-1.

The Tribe wasted an opportunity in the 4th, when 3B Akinori Iwamura and Brian Myrow worked back-to-back walks to open the inning.� A coaching visit to the mound settled down Rochester starter Matt Fox, who got two fly outs and a strikeout to end the inning without a run scoring.� The Red Wings also missed out on an opportunity in the 4th, when Wilson Ramos singled, but was erased as he headed for second base in a strike-em-out-throw-em-out double play.

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Moss Has 3 Hits and 3 RBI In Indians’ Loss

Rochester Red Wings� 6,� Indianapolis Indians� 5 ..�������� (box)

IMG_3824The Indians out-hit the Red Wings 15 – 8 at Frontier Field in Rochester, NY, but just getting on base is not enough� — you have to come around to score.� That was what the Indians could not do, as they lost to the Red Wings tonight.� Each member of the Tribe’s line-up had at least one hit, with RF Brandon Moss (photo) leading the charge with 3 singles.� Starter Brian Burres was charged with the loss, and reliever Brian Bass was charged with a Blown Save.

The two teams traded runs in the 1st inning.� Aki Iwamura, playing second base tonight, got things started for the Tribe with a one-out single into center field.� 1B Brian Myrow grounded to first, where Red Wings’ 1B Brock Peterson made the scoop and threw to SS Trevor Plouffe, who forced out Iwamura at second, but could not get the ball back to first base in time to make the out on Myrow.� Three consecutive singles followed — by DH Jeff Clement, RF Brandon Moss, and C Luke Carlin. Myrow scored on Moss’s hit.� Carlin’s grounder to second loaded the bases, but another ground out ended the inning.

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IMG_3818Brian Burres (photo) gave up two walks in the bottom of the 1st, to RF Matt Macri and C Jose Morales.� With two outs and those runners on first and second bases, 2B Brendan Harris singled into right field, scoring Macri from second base.� A ground out ended the inning, with the score tied at 1-1.

Burres retired the Red Wings in order in the 2nd inning, but gave up another run in the 3rd inning on three straight singles, to Macri, LF Jacque Jones, and Jose Morales.� Morales’ liner into left field drove in Macri, and the Red Wings were ahead 2-1.

Rochester’s starter Glenn Perkins held the Indians to just one single over the 2nd through 4th innings.� He struck out the side in the 2nd and again in the 4th, and only Brian Myrow reached base with his line drive single up the middle.� The Indians got to him in the 5th, with a rally started by a lead-off walk to SS Argenis Diaz. As so often happens, the lead-off walk comes back to haunt you, and that’s what happend to Perkins.� Newly returned 3B Brian Bixler did what we so often have seen him do in Indianapolis — he rocketed a ball into right field for a triple, scoring Diaz.� Aki Iwamura slipped a single just to the left of SS Plouffe, and Bixler came in with the go-ahead run.� Brian Myrow struck out, and Jeff Clement grounded right to 1B Peterson, who stepped on the first base bag for the out on Clement, then tried to get the reverse double play at second.� But that play requires a tag out at second (since with Clement out, it’s no longer a force out at second), and even though the ball got to second base before Iwamura, he slid into second before Harris could get the tag down.� Brandon Moss singled into center field, and Iwamura scored from second base, giving the Indians a 4-2 lead.

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