Indians Begin Second Half With Loss

Rochester Red Wings� 7,� Indianapolis Indians� 5 (box)

IMG_3597Late inning runs put the Red Wings ahead to stay as the Indians lost at Frontier Field in Rochester, NY tonight.

Pitching was the story in the first half of the game.� Red Wings’ starter Anthony Swarzak pitched 5 shutout innings and allowed only one hit, a double by LF Kevin Melillo to lead off the 5th inning.� Swarzak did walk an amazing 5 Tribe batters, though none of them were able to come around and score.� After 3B Akinori Iwamura reached base on a fielding error by Swarzak in the top of the 1st, 1B Brian Myrow walked.� A strikeout and a ground out ended the inning with both still on base.� CF Alex Presley walked in the 2nd and the 4th, and Iwamura and Myrow both walked in the third, but all were left on base.

Indians’ starter Daniel McCutchen (photo above) faced only one batter over the minimum in his first 4 innings of work.� Unfortunately that one extra batter, DH Jose Morales blasted a lead-off homer to begin the 2nd inning and give the Red Wings a 1-0 lead.� The Red Wings extended their lead to 3-0 in the bottom of the 5th.� RF Brian Dinkelman led off the inning by slipping a ground ball past Tribe 2B Jim Negrych, for a single into right field.� 2B Brendan harris lined a double into the left-center field gap, and Dinkelman came around to score from first base.� McCutchen walked 1B Brock Peterson.� C Wilson Ramos grounded to short, where SS Argenis Diaz tried to start a double play.� Peterson was out at second base, but Negrych’s throw to first base sailed wide to the outfield side of the bag and got past Brian Myrow.� The throwing error let Ramos advance to second base and let Harris score.� 3B Matt Macri singled on a little looper into left field, though Ramos was held at third base.� McCutchen struck out CF Dustin Martin for the second out, but walked SS Trevor Plouffe to load the bases.� McCutchen got out of that when LF Jacque Jones grounded to second base, and no further runs scored, but the Red Wings were ahead� 3-0.

RF Jonathan Van Every got the Indians one run closer with a solo home run to straight-away center field in the top of the 6th.� They took another step closer in the top of the 8th.� Jim Negrych and Alex Presley hit back-to-back singles with one out.� After a pitching change, Van Every struck outs.� Then C Jason Jaramillo, just down from Pittsburgh, grounded to short, but this time it was the Red Wings who had the throwing error.� SS Trevor Plouffe’s throw to first got past 1B Peterman, and Negrych scored as Jaramillo was safe at first.� The inning ended when Argenis Diaz struck out.

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Rain Delays Indians and Mud Hens: Indians Pull Out The Win

The Indians were leading the Mud Hens 6-3 in the 6th…

FINAL:� Indianapolis Indians� 6,� Toledo Mud Hens� 4 (box)

The big news, even before the game began, was the player moves made by the Pittsburgh Pirates.� With pitcher Zach Duke done with his rehab assignment in Altoona and ready to come back onto the Pirates’ active roster, someone else had to be removed from the roster.� That someone is reliever Justin Thomas, who has been optioned back to the Indians.

Secondly, the Pirates have announced that they are optioning back-up catcher Jason Jaramillo to Indianapolis.� The reason given is that he has had minimal playing time during the first half of the season, and needs to get the work in.� Jaramillo will become the regular catcher in Indianapolis after the All-Star break.� The Pirates have also moved pitcher Chris Jakubauskas to the 60-day disabled list, opening up a spot on the 40-man roster.� So, who will take his place?

The Pirates intend to make that announcement later in the week.� Possibilities include Indians’ Erik Kratz and Luke Carlin, and Altoona Curve catcher Hector Gimenez (who played for the Indians in 2009).� Kratz is the Indians’ only representative for the AAA All-Star game, which will be played on Wednesday in Lehigh Valley — just a short hop from Kratz’s home town.� He has a lot of family and friends coming to see him play, though he will not be the starting catcher in the game.� SO — is the delay in the Pirates’ announcement so that they can give Kratz time to participate in the All-Star game?� If he were pulled at the last minute, it might be tricky to get someone else there to represent the Indians.� Carlin has only just come back from his ankle injury and is not entirely up to speed yet.� Gimenez could certainly handle things at the major league level — but what would that say to Erik Kratz?� “Sure, Erik, you’re a great guy and we were considering you for the major league back-up back in March, and sure, you are an All-Star for two years running at the AAA level — but we’re going to promote Gimenez from AA over you.� Oh, and when you get back to Indy, you won’t be the starting catcher either.”

Back to the game.. which was delayed for about 15 minutes before even starting, then halted again due to rain in the 2nd inning.� That delay lasted over an hour.

LF Kevin Melillo got the Indians started with a double driven into right field to begin the game.� 3B Akinori Iwamura followed with a single into right field, and Melillo raced around from second to score.�� The Mud Hens came right back in the bottom of the frame, against Tribe starter Dana Eveland. SS Will Rhymes led off with a single through into left field, then Eveland struck out 3B Brent Dlugach.� LF Ryan Strieby doubled, moving Rhymes to third, and DH Jeff Larish brought in both Rhymes and Strieby with a single up the middle, to give the Mud Hens a 2-1 lead.� Eveland walked 1B Jeff Frazier, but then got CF Casper wells to bounce into a double play, ending the inning.

Eveland had gotten two outs and had 2B Max Leon on first base after a single when the rain halted play in the bottom of the 2nd.� The delay was long enough so that Eveland did not come back out, with workhorse Jeremy Powell taking the mound instead.� Powell ended the 2nd inning, then pitched two more scoreless innings, allowing only a walk.

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Van Every Is The Hero In The 9th

Indianapolis Indians� 3,� Toledo Mud Hens� 1 (box)

IMG_2602RF Jonathan Van Every’s (photo) 3-run homer in the top of the 9th gave the Indianapolis Indians the win over the Toledo Mud Hens tonight at Fifth Third Field in Toledo.� SS Argenis Diaz went 3-for-3 at the plate, including a double, and CF Alex Presley went 3-for-4, and also had a double.

The pitchers were kept busy for the first four innings of the game, though neither team scored.� Tribe starter Mike Crotta gave up a double to LF Ryan Strieby with two outs in the 1st and hit 3B Jeff Larish with a pitch, but a line out to Tribe 3B Akinori Iwamura ended the inning.� Crotta worked around a single by CF Casper Wells in the 2nd.� He walked RF Jon Weber in the 3rd, but erased him with a double play.

Toledo starter Rick Porcello gave up a lone single to Aki Iwamura in the 1st inning, and a double by Alex Presley in the 4th.� The Indians threatened in the 2nd, beginning with a single by Presley.� A balk moved Presley to second base.� C Luke Carlin walked, then Presley was caught trying to steal third base.� Jonathan Van Every also walked, giving the Indians runners on first and second.� Argenis Diaz took a grounder up the middle for a single, and Carlin rounded third and raced for the plate.� The throw in from center field was on-target and on time though, and Carlin was out at the plate.� The Indians also put two runners on base in the 5th, when Diaz doubled off the wall in the right-center field gap, and LF Kevin Melillo walked, but a strikeout and a ground out ended the inning.

IMG_3564The Mud Hens got to Crotta (photo) in the 5th.� Casper Wells walked, and DH Max Leon grounded up the middle, just out of reach of Indians’ 2B Jim Negrych, sending Wells to third base. C Jeff Kunkel brought in Wells with a sacrifice fly, and the Mud Hens had a 1-0 lead.� Jon Weber also singled on a line drive into left field.� Leon, eager for an extra run, came around from first base, as LF Kevin Melillo fired the ball in from left field.� The throw sailed over the first cut-off man, but went right to the second cut-off man, Aki Iwamura.� Iwamura relayed the throw to Carlin at the plate, and that throw was nearly perfect.� As Leon slid around to the foul side of the plate and tried to reach in with his left hand to tag the dish, Carlin had the ball in his hand, and only had to lean to his left to tag Leon before Leon could touch anything but dirt with his hand.� That ended the inning, and kept the score tight, at 1-0.

That one run looked bigger and bigger over the next three innings.� The Indians went down in order in the top of the 6th.� Mike Crotta worked around a double by Jeff Larish in the bottom of the 6th, but kept the Mud Hens from scoring again.� Crotta exited after 6 innings, having thrown 99 pitches (64 strikes) and allowed the run on 5 hits and 3 walks, with 7 strikeouts. Wil Ledezma relieved Crotta to begin the 7th.� He walked Casper Wells, then struck out the next three batters.� The Indians’ first two batters struck out in the 7th, then Argenis Diaz had his third hit of the game, a line drive into right field.� Diaz was able to get to second base when RF Jon Weber’s throw back to the infield zipped right past the first base bag, bounced off the dugout facing, and ended up by the backstop behind home plate.� Diaz was left stranded on base with a ground out.� DH Brandon Moss singled in the 8th, and was also left on base.� Jean Machi retired the side in order in the bottom of the 8th, including two strikeouts.

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Indians Are Up.. And Down…And Up…And Down

Columbus Clippers� 10,� Indianapolis Indians� 9 (box)

IMG_3261

It felt like a roller coaster ride — up… then down…. then up…. then down.� The Indians had three home runs… but the Clippers had four homers.� 3B Doug Bernier had 3 hits and 1B Brian Myrow (photos) batted in 4 runs… but the Indians committed 3 fielding errors, one particularly critical.� The Indians had a 5-run 1st inning…� but Charlie Morton gave up 7 runs and let the Clippers catch up.

The game started in the Indians’ favor.� The first five batters of the game all reached base and scored:� Doug Bernier led off with a single lined into center field.� RF Brandon Moss bounced a fly ball off the center field wall, moving Bernier to third.� Brian Myrow singled into right field, scoring both Bernier and Moss.� DH Jeff Clement kept the rally going wtih a single through the right side of the infield, and C Erik Kratz blasted a 3-run home run over the left field wall.� At that point, Clippers’ pitcher David Huff suddenly found his control.� He struck out 2B Jim Negrych, CF Alex Presley, and LF Jonathan Van Every, all swinging, to end the inning.

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IMG_3555Charlie Morton (photo) took the mound with a 5-0 lead… which he promptly began to give away.� The first three batters ripped line drives off him — a single by CF Jose Constanza, a single by SS Josh Rodriguez, and an RBI double by 3B Luis Valbuena.� The only salvation was that when Constanza aimed for third base on Rodriguez’s single, Rodriguez at first hesitated, then tried for second on the throw to third.� The hesitation was all the Indians needed to tag him out at second base.� Morton balked, moving Valbuena to third base, and Valbuena scored from there on a ground out by DH Jared Goedert.� Another groundout ended the inning, and the score was 5-2.

The Indians got the two runs right back again.� SS Argenis Diaz was the only member of the lineup to not get in on the fun in the 1st inning, so he started off the 2nd inning with a single off the top of the wall in the right field corner.� Unfortunately, Diaz stumbled as he was rounding first base, so instead of reaching second base, he had to try to scramble back to first, and didn’t make it in time.� Doug Bernier doubled off the upper part of the right field wall, making Clippers’ RF Jordan Brown chase the ball as it ricocheted back towards the infield.� After a ground out, Brian Myrow lifted a long fly ball over the left field wall, a 2-run shot, to give the Indians a 7-2 lead.

Morton got through the bottom of the 2nd inning, allowing only a walk to C Lou Marson — maybe he was settling down?� No, that hope was dashed in the 3rd, when two errors, including one by Morton, contributed to 4 runs, only one of which was earned.� With one out, Rodriguez doubled into right field.� Brian Myrow had Valbuena’s grounder bounce off his glove and skip a few feet away, but by the time Myrow could get to it and flip over to first base, Valbuena was safe, and Rodriguez had moved to third base.� Goedert tapped one back to the mound, where Morton did the right thing — field the ball quickly, look at Rodriguez, then start walking toward him, still holding the ball, as Rodriguez was trapped in no-mans’-land on the third base line.� As he continued to approach Rodriguez, Morton threw to C Erik Kratz, who threw on to 3B Doug Bernier as they closed in on Rodriguez, and Valbuena sidled into third base.� Bernier threw to Morton, as the trap closed further, and Morton threw back to…. well, he was aiming for Bernier, I think, but instead the ball sailed over his head, over third base, and into the outfield.� Rodriguez, suddenly rescued from certain death, bolted for the plate and scored, and Valbuena also scored from third base, as Goedert reached second base — a 2-run error.� The next batter, RF Jordan Brown followed with a home run to straight out center field, and the Clippers were within one run of the Indians, 7-6.

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Rain Calls A Halt In Columbus

Indianapolis Indians �3, �Columbus Clippers � 2 (box)

IMG_3825The Clippers and the Indians are in the middle of a rain delay in Columbus, Ohio. �The Indians have a slim 3-2 lead, on the strength of a solo home run by DH Jeff Clement (photo) in the 5th inning.

The Clippers got the game going in the bottom of the 1st inning, when Tribe starter Brian Burres gave up a 2-out walk to SS Luis Valbuena, followed by a 2-run home run, a no-doubter, to 3B Jared Goedert. �Burres settled in after that, allowing only one single over the next two innings. �He worked out of a jam in the 4th inning. �With one out, RF Jordan Brown and 1B Wes Hodges smacked back-to-back line drive singles into right field. �A walk to former Indy Indian LF Brian Bixler loaded the bases. �Pitching coach Dean Treanor made a visit to the mound, and Burres responded by striking out C Chris Gimenez, then getting 2B Cord Phelps to fly out to end the inning.

2B Jim Negrych was responsible for the only Indians’ hit over the first two innings. �After fouling a pitch off his right shin, Negrych slipped a single through the right side of the infield. �He was left stranded on base when CF Alex Presley’s ground out ended the inning.

The 3rd inning began with five Indians’ batter reaching base safely. �LF Jonathan Van Every led off with a single that just edged past the diving Clippers’ 1B Hodges. �SS Argenis Diaz lined a single into center field. �When RF Kevin Melillo drove the first pitch he saw over RF Jordan Brown’s head and off the upper section of the right field wall, both Van Every and Diaz advanced one base — but just one base, and Van Every was held at third instead of waved around to try to score. �Diaz stopped at second, and Melillo rounded first and started for second — until he looked up and saw Diaz already standing there. �Melillo scrambled back to the first base bag, just in time to avoid being tagged out. �3B Akinori Iwamura was next, and he also singled, taking a low line drive through the hole at short and into left field. �Van Every scored on that hit, and the bases were still loaded. �1B Brian Myrow worked the count full, and took a walk, and Diaz trotted home from third base to tie the score.

At that point, Clippers’ pitcher Josh Tomlin suddenly got his act together again. �With the bases still loaded, he struck out�Jeff Clement and C Erik Kratz on 6 straight pitches. �Jim Negrych ran the count full and fouled off another ball, but then struck out to end the inning and leave the three runners on base.

The Tribe took the lead in the top of the 5th, courtesy of Jeff Clement. �He blasted a towering home run over the right field wall, and even over the building behind the right field wall, and into a net — the net the Clippers had hung up there after former Indian Garrett Jones had lofted a homer over the building and into the street beyond. �Seems they aren’t fond of baseballs falling out of the sky in Columbus.

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