Indianapolis Indians 2, Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 0
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Five Indians’ pitchers combined to shut-out the Iron Pigs at Coca-Cola Park in Allentown, PA this evening. The Pigs were held to just 4 hits, while the Indians posted 6 hits.
Starter Sean Gallagher (photo) earned his 2nd win of the season, pitching 5 scoreless innings and allowing 2 hits and 4 walks, with 5 strikeouts. Gallagher retired the Pigs in order in the 1st inning, then had to battle with runners on base in each of the next four innings. With two outs in the 2nd inning, Gallagher walked former Indy Indian C Erik Kratz and hit former Indy Indiana 1B Tagg Bozied with a pitch. He walked SS Brian Bocock to load the bases, then struck out Pigs’ starter (and another former Indy Indian) Brian Bass to end the inning and leave the bases loaded.
The 3rd inning looked like an instant replay. With two outs, Gallagher again loaded the bases. He gave up a single by CF John Mayberry, who also stole second, and a walk to former Indian LF Brandon Moss. He struck out RF Delwyn Young, but strike three was a wild pitch, and Young made it safely to first base. This time it was Kratz who struck out to end the inning and leave the bases full.
Three of the Indians’ six hits came off the bat of 1B Matt Hague. CF Gorkys Hernandez had 2 hits, and 2B Brian Friday had the last Tribe hit. Hernandez’s first hit was a line drive single into left field to begin the 3rd inning. Gallagher dropped down a sacrifice bunt, moving Hernandez to second base, and when he saw that none of the Pigs were covering third base, Hernandez took off and reached third safely. “Gallagher put down a pretty good bunt, and when I got to second, I saw the third baseman was off the base. I said if I can take another base, I help my team,” said Hernandez after the game. It was a help, because after SS Chase d’Arnaud walked, Friday singled, and Hernandez scored from third. LF Alex Presley grounded to first, moving the runners to second and third bases. RF John Bowker walked, loading the bases. This time it was the Indians who left the bases loaded, though, as a fly out ended the inning, but with the Indians ahead 1-0.
Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs 4, Indianapolis Indians 3
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The Indianapolis Indians were in the lead for most of the game tonight at Coca-Cola park in Allentown, PA, but the Iron Pigs staged a 8th inning rally to take the win.
SS Chase d’Arnaud began the game with a double into right field, skipping between the Iron Pigs’ 1B Cody Overbeck and the first base bag. 2B Brian Friday singled into left field, and d’Arnaud rounded third and headed for the plate as former Indy Indian (2010) LF Brandon Moss made the throw in from left field. Moss’ throw was on time, and another former Indian (2009-10) C Erik Kratz made the catch and tried for the tag. But d’Arnaud was faster, and Kratz lost the ball when he went for the tag, and the Tribe had a 1-0 lead. LF Alex Presley flied out to left field, and again Moss’ throw to the infield was not in time, so that Friday was safe when he tagged up and raced for third. But Moss got it right on his third try — RF John Bowker also flied out to left, and Moss turned it into a double play when this throw to the plate was on target and on time, allowing Kratz to tag out Friday as he tried to tag up and score from third.
Back-to-back singles by 3B Andy Marte and 1B Matt Hague led off the 2nd inning for the Indians. C Wyatt Toregas bounced into an around-the-horn double play, eliminating Hague at second, but allowing Marte to reach third base. CF Gorkys Hernandez grounded to short, but he was fast enough to beat out the throw to first, earning an infield single and an RBI, as Marte scrambled home from third to give the Indians a 2-0 lead.
Garrett Olson began his night on the mound with 4 perfect innings. Moss broke up the (brief) no-hitter with a double to lead off the 5th inning, then was out in a double play. RF Delwyn Young flied out to center, then Hernandez’s throw in to third base allowed Marte to tag out Moss as he tried to advance to third.
Indianapolis Indians 7, Rochester Red Wings 5 (Game 1)
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A 4-run 6th inning gave the Indians the edge this afternoon at Frontier Field in Rochester, NY, despite being out-hit 13-9. SS Chase d’Arnaud led the Tribe with 3 hits and 2 RBI, and LF Alex Presley and 3B Andy Marte had 2 hits apiece.
Both teams got their scoring started early with 2 runs in the 1st inning. With former Indy Indian (2009) Eric Hacker making the start for Rochester, d’Arnaud began with a strikeout, then 2B Corey Wimberly was hit by a pitch. Presley walked, and when Hacker pick-off attempt went wild, both runners moved into scoring position on the error. RF John Bowker’s grounder let the Rochester third baseman fire back to the plate, where Wimberly was tagged out. With Bowker still on first base, Marte lined a double into left field, scoring both Presley and Bowker for the early 2-0 lead.
The Red Wings came right back in the bottom of the inning. The first batter Brian Burres faced, CF Dustin Martin, doubled into right field, and the next batter, SS Trevor Plouffe, smacked a 2-run homer to tie the score.
Marte doubled again in to lead off the top of the 4th, and when the Wings’ right fielder misplayed the ball, Marte advanced to third. A sacrifice fly by 1B Matt Hague plated Marte, to give the Indians a 3-2 lead.
Burres had a tough second inning to work through. The lead off batter, 3B Chase Lambin, led off with a single, but was picked off first and caught stealing. After a ground out, a walk, a single by Martin, and another walk loaded the bases. Burres got out of the jam with a ground out, leaving the bases full. Burres also got lucky in the 4th, when another single by Lambin and a double by C Steve Holm had Lambin rounding third and heading for the plate. Presley made the play on the double in left field, then his throw in was relayed by d’Arnaud, who fired on to C Wyatt Toregas for the tag out of Lambin at the plate.
Corey Wimberly got back to first base safely this time… but was picked off moments later.
Gwinnett Braves 4, Indianapolis Indians 0
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Another pitching duel erupted at Victory Field tonight, as the Indianapolis Indians and the Gwinnett Braves battled it out over a scoreless tie for 8 innings. The loss dropped the Indians to below the .500 mark as they finish this home stand. The Indians and the Braves split this 4 game series, two games each.
Tribe starter Garrett Olson pitched 5 hitless and scoreless innings but did not figure into the decision. He allowed one base runner over those innings. Braves SS Julio Lugo worked the count full then took a walk in the top of the 1st. After Olson struck out rehabbing Atlanta Brave outfielder Jason Heyward (photo, not looking too pleased), he got 1B Mauro Gomez to ground to short to force out Julio at second base. Olson retired the next 12 batters in order, including 4 more strikeouts. He got some help from his fielders. In the 5th inning, 3B Dan Nelson took a long fly ball into deep right field. Alex Presley, playing right field for the second day in a row, headed back for the wall. He turned one way, then the other, and finally made the over-the-shoulder catch at the warning track for the second out of the inning. That play was followed by a nice play by SS Brian Friday on a sharp grounder off the bat of 2B Ed Lucas. Friday went to his right for a back-hand catch, then fired over to 1B Matt Hague to end the inning.
Olson was relieved by Chris Leroux after 5 innings. Olson was on a 50 pitch count for his last start on June 8th — due to working in relief in the earlier part of the season, and also having been on the Disabled List. So, even though he was pitching a no-hitter, Olson’s outing was cut short after 66 pitches (44 strikes). Leroux continued the no-hitter with a 1-2-3 inning in the 6th.
Corey Wimberly was the only Tribe batter to reach third base tonight.
Gwinnett Braves 2, Indianapolis Indians 0
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Starter Brad Lincoln pitched 6 strong innings in his first time out after missing his last start, but he didn’t get any run support, and suffered his 6th loss of the season, as the Indianapolis Indians lost to the Gwinnett Braves at Victory Field tonight. The Tribe batters recorded 6 hits, with two by Corey Wimberly, but could not push any of their base runners across the plate.
The Indians had some unusual situations in their defense and also in their lineup tonight. Clearly the injuries affecting the Pirates have the major league club looking more closely at what players in Indianapolis are doing. With Josh Harrison still out due to an oblique muscle strain, the Pirates are looking for another infielder who can play third base. Tonight, Chase d’Arnaud played third base for the first time this year, and the first time since a few games back at State College in 2008. Wimberly played second base for the first time this season. The Pirates have been talking about bringing up Alex Presley next week, when they begin interleague play again. Tonight Presley played right field for the first time this season. He did play some right field during spring training, and also last season when he had his September call-up to the Pirates. Andrew Lambo moved over to left field tonight.
The other change was that Brad Lincoln batted 8th in the order (photo above), with Wimberly taking the 9th spot. Manager Dean Treanor wanted to give Wimberly the chance of being in a position to bunt, and he felt that the 9th spot in the order would be best for that.
Lincoln had to face Atlanta Braves’ rehabbing outfielder Jason Heyward (photo), and it was Heyward who got the Braves’ scoring started in the top of the 1st. Lincoln retired the first two batters, LF Jose Constanza and SS Julio Lugo, both of whom had a hit-fest last night. Heyward ripped a line drive into the left field corner for a double. 1B Mauro Gomez followed with a grounder back up the middle, just out of reach of SS Brian Friday’s dive, driving in Heyward. A fly out left Gomez on first, but the Braves had a 1-0 lead.
Lincoln worked around one runner on base in three of the next four innings. He walked CF Jeff Fiorentino to begin the 2nd inning. 2B Ed Lucas rocketed a liner right back at Lincoln, whose glove hand came up almost in self defense. The ball almost tore the glove off his hand, but stuck in the web for a line out. Lincoln tossed to first, easily doubling off Fiorentino. He retired the side in the 3rd, then gave up a double to Gomez in the 4th. Gomez hit a rising line drive that missed being a home run by inches. Instead, it caromed off the top of the right field fence at the edge of the grass berm and back toward Presley, who got it back to the infield quickly, holding Gomez to two bases. Two other great defensive plays kept more Braves from reaching base in the 4th. Heyward lifted a high foul pop to the left side of the field, which d’Arnaud chased down and caught with a slide on the grass in front of the Indians’ dugout. 3B Wilkin Castillo followed Gomez’s double with a grounder to the middle of the infield. Wimberly went to his right and made a diving stop, keeping the ball from going into the outfield. His foot slipped as he was getting up, but Wimberly was still able to fire over to first base in time for the out on Castillo. Gomez went to third on the play, but Wimberly had saved a run.