Owens Can’t Overcome Shaky First Inning

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Shelby Ford’s lead-off home run was a bright spot for the Indians.  

Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees  10,  Indianapolis Indians  3
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A shaky first inning from Tribe starter Rudy Owens gave the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees a lead they would never give up, as the Indians lost at Victory Field tonight.  Owens suffered his 4th loss of the season, and with the Tribe bullpen getting thin, outfielder Corey Wimberly made his professional pitching debut.  The Yankees posted 17 hits and scored in every other inning.  

IMG_5869It was a tough night for Owens (photo).  He lasted 5 innings and allowed 7 runs on 10 hits and 2 walks.  The first inning began with three consecutive hits:  a double by CF Austin Krum, a single by SS Ramiro Pena, and a 2-RBI triple by C Jesus Montero.  The triple hit near the top of the right field wall, over the leaping RF Miles Durham, who then crashed into the wall and fell to the ground, as CF Alex Presley chased down the ricochet.  Montero held at third when 1B Jorge Vazquez grounded to third for the first out of the inning, then Owens walked LF Justin Maxwell.

 Maxwell was leaning off first, and Owens’ throw to first picked him off.  Maxwell took off for second base.  1B Matt Hague took a quick look over at Montero on third to make sure he was not thinking of going home on the steal attempt.  But that extra second it took Hague to look to third was enough so that the throw to SS Brian Friday, covering second, was a second too late.  Montero made an awkward slide into second base and Friday’s tag was late, and Montero was called safe (photos below).  As Friday looked at the umpire in protest, Montero, still off balance, rolled off the base — if Friday had held the tag, Montero would have been out.  

  After a strikeout by 3B Brandon Laird, DH Jordan Parraz lined a 2-RBI single into center field, driving in both Montero and Maxwell.  2B Kevin Russo also walked, then RF Dan Brewer’s RBI single plated Parraz.  Brewer tried to advance to second base on the throw in from Durham in right, but a quick throw by 3B Andy Marte to Friday this time let Friday tag out Brewer.  The Yankees had a 5-0 lead.

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Ford, Bowker, and Watson Lead Come-From-Behind Win

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Shelby Ford gets the force out at second base, as Brian Friday backs him up.

Indianapolis Indians  8,  Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees  5
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The Indianapolis Indians engineered another come-from-behind win tonight, to defeat the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees at Victory Field.  2B Shelby Ford (photo), who last played for the Indians in 2009, celebrated his return to AAA with 3 hits and started two big Tribe rallies.  LF John Bowker also contributed 3 hits and 3 RBI.  Reliever Tony Watson celebrated his 26th birthday with two scoreless innings of work, including 5 strikeouts.  

When starters Sean Gallager and Adam Warren squared off last week, Warren dominated the Indians and held the Tribe batters to just 3 hits in 8 innings.  Today, Gallagher and the Tribe turned the tables on Warren.

The Yankees began the game by taking advantage of an error in the top of the 1st.  With one out, Gallagher walked SS Ramiro Pena, then gave up a single up the middle to DH Jesus Montero.  1B Jorge Vazquez tapped a fast bouncer back to the mound, which Gallagher easily fielded.  He whirled and fired to Ford covering second base (photo above), for the force out on Montero.  Ford’s relay on to first base, though, was airmailed and landed in the visitor’s dugout.  Vazquez was awarded second base, and Pena, who had reached third base, was sent on home, for the Yankees’ first run of the game.  The run would have been unearned, but while pitching to CF Justin Maxwell, Gallagher threw a wild pitch.  If the throwing error had not been made, Pena would have been on third base, and would have scored on the wild pitch, which changed to run from “unearned” to “earned”.  Maxwell popped out to Ford to end the inning.  

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Promotions For Harrison, Curry, And Brown

IMG_5688In the wake of more injuries, the Pirates have called infielder Josh Harrison up from the Indians.  

Harrison has played both second and third base for the Tribe this season.  In 37 games, Harrison has hit .321 for the Indians, with 8 doubles, 2 triples, 2 homers, and 11 RBI.  The Cincinnati native has walked 7 times and struck out 17 times.  He has stolen 8 bases in 13 tries.  Harrison began the season with a hot April, hitting .375.  He has dropped to a still-respectable .282 in May, but with more RBI.  

Harrison is needed because Steve Pearce, who has been playing third base for the Pirates in the absence of Pedro Alvarez, is going onto the DL with a calf injury.  It will likely be a short-term promotion for Harrison, just until Alvarez returns…. unless Harrison makes a big splash at the major league level.   

The Pirates have not yet made an official announcement, but it is likely that catcher Ryan Doumit will also be going on the DL.  Tribe catcher Jason Jaramillo is not ready, after being hit by a foul ball earlier in the week.  That’s making it look like Dusty Brown will be added to the Pirates’ 40-man roster and called up to join the Pirates in New York.  Brown was pulled from the Indians’ starting line-up at the last moment last night, and he’s the only other option.  Wyatt Toregas has played only sparingly so far this season and has yet to get a hit.   

UPDATE: Yes, confirmed, Brown has also been added to the 40-man roster and promoted.  Ross Ohlendorf was moved to the 60-day DL to make room.

1B Matt Curry has also been promoted from the A level West Virginia Power to the AA Altoona Curve.  Yes, that is right — skipping right over the A+ Bradenton level.  Curry has been hitting .361 for the Power, with 15 doubles, 3 triples, 9 homers, and 34 RBI.  Curry hit .400 in April and has “dropped” to .325 for May.  The Texas native is 23 years old, a little old for the A level anyway.  

Aaron Baker, the regular first baseman for the Marauders  is currently hitting .275 with 8 doubles, 7 homers, and 38 RBI.

And more update:
Coming up from Altoona to fill the new holes on the Indians’ roster:  INF Shelby Ford, OF/1B Miles Durham, and C Eric Fryer.  Ford has played with the Indians before (2009), but it will the first time at the AAA level for durham and Fryer.

 

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Homers For Fryer, Durham, Latimore, Baker, And Anderson

Saturday evening with the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates:

Altoona Curve  8,  Binghamton Mets  6
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First, the Curve and the Mets had to finish up yesterday’s game, which had been suspended in the 7th inning, with the score tied at 6-6.  Binghamton had scored 4 runs in the 1st, and one run in both the 4th and 5th.  The Curve had tied the score with 3 runs in each of the 5th and 6th innings.  The big hit in the 5th was CF Starling Marte’s triple, and the big hit in the 6th was pinch-hitter Eric Fryer’s triple.   Curve starter Aaron Thompson had allowed all 6 Binghamton hits on 9 hits, no walks, with 4 strikeouts in his 5 innings of work.  Tim Alderson came on to pitch in the bottom of the 6th, and allowed a hit but maintained the tie.  

The top of the 7th began with a single by LF Quincy Latimore, who was replaced at first base by SS Jordy Mercer on a grounder force out at second.  Mercer stole second base, then took third on a wild pitch.  3B Jeremy Farrell walked to put runners on the corners, and that’s when the game was suspended.  When they picked it up again this afternoon with a new relief pitcher, two quick outs left Mercer and Farrell still standing on the corners.  

Anthony Claggett came on in relief of Alderson, and in a double switch, Shelby Ford took over at first base for Miles Durham.  Claggett kept the Mets from scoring in the bottom of the 7th.  Then Ford gave the Curve the lead with a solo homer in the top of the 8th.  The Curve added an insurance run in the top of the 9th, when Mercer and Farrell led off with a pair of singles.  Pinch-hitter Kris Watts moved both runners into scoring position with a ground out, then RF Brad Chalk lined a single into left field.  Mercer scored easily on the play, but Farrell was out at the plate on the throw in from left field.  

Claggett held on to the lead with a scoreless bottom of the 8th, allowing just one hit.  He was credited with his third win of the season.  Noah Krol earned his 10th Save of the season with a scoreless 9th.  He walked the first batter of the inning, then retired the next three batters with two fly outs and a pop out.

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Power Go Long; Curve Cut Short

Friday evening’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor league affiliates:

Altoona Curve  6,  Binghamton Mets  6
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Rain halted the game between the Curve and the Mets in Binghamton, NY in the top of the 7th inning, with the score tied at 6-6.  Starter Aaron Thompson got into trouble early in the game, when he gave up 4 runs to the B-Mets in the bottom of the 1st.  A single and a hit batter led off the inning, then two fly outs and a wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position.  Three singles brought in a run each, and a double added the 4th run of the inning.  Thompson gave up a hit in each of the next two innings, but erased one with a double play, and left the other stranded.  A solo homer in the bottom of the 4th gave the Mets a 5-0 lead, then a single, a double, and a sacrifice fly gave the Mets their 6th run in the 5th. 

The Curve put one runner on base in each of the first four innings, but none of those runners came around to score.  2B Brock Holt walked in the 1st, but was out in a double play.  C Tony Sanchez singled in the 2nd and moved to second base on a wild pitch.  Holt smacked a ground-rule double in the 3rd, and SS Jordy Mercer walked and got as far as third base in the 4th.  

1B Miles Durham got the Curve going with a rally in the top of the 5th, when he was hit by a pitch.  Thompson tried for a sacrifice fly, but it turned into a forcer out of Durham at second base, leaving Thompson on first.  Holt singled, then CF Starling Marte tripled into right field, scoring both Thompson and Holt.  LF Quincy Latimore singled into left field, bringing in Marte, to cut the B-Mets’ lead to 5-3.

The Mets made it 6-3 in the bottom of the 5th, but the Curve came right back with another 3 runs in the top of the 6th to tie the game.  A fielding error at shortstop put 3B Jeremy Farrell on base, and Sanchez’s double let Farrell came around to score from first base.  RF Brad Chalk walked, then pinch-hitter Eric Fryer drove in base runners with the second triple of the game.  

Tim Alderson came on to pitch the bottom of the 6th, and he worked around a single, to maintain the tie.  The top of the 7th began with a single by Latimore, and a grounder force out by Mercer, leaving Mercer on first base.  Mercer stole second and then moved to third base on a wild pitch.  Farrell walked, to give the Curve runners on the corners  – and that’s when the storms halted the game.  

The game will resume on Saturday prior to the regularly scheduled game.  This game will finish as a 9-inning game, but the regularly scheduled game will probably be a 7-inning game.  

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