Watching from the dugout: Pedro Alvarez, Tom Filer, Dusty Brown, Jordy Mercer, Kris Watts
Toledo Mud Hens 5, Indianapolis Indians 1
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The Indianapolis Indians must have used up too many of the hits in their bats in yesterday’s 10-4 win, because today they were back to scoring just one run, as they did in the two previous games against the Toledo Mud Hens. Tonight at Victory Field, the Tribe posted just 4 hits on their way to their lone run, while the Mud Hens stacked up 12 hits and 5 runs.
Rudy Owens (photo) struck out a season-high 8 batters in his start for the Tribe, but he also gave up 8 hits and could not get through the 5th inning. He was charged with his 6th loss of the season, giving him a 6-6 record.
The game began with LF Will Rhymes lining a double into right field for a double. Owens struck out the next two batters, 3B Danny Worth and rehabbing 2B Carlos Guillen. DH Ryan Strieby lined a single into left field, and Rhymes raced around to score from second base. Owens struck out former Indy Indian CF Jeff Salazar to end the inning, then began the 2nd by striking out 1B Scott Thorman. RF Ben Guez doubled into center field with one out in the 2nd, but a fly out and another strikeout left Guez on base.
(Photo: Pitching coach Tom Filer, Rudy Owens, Dusty Brown, Corey Wimberly)
Owens also worked around a one-out hit by Worth in the 3rd — a bloopy hit that fell into no-man’s land behind first base, out of reach of Tribe RF Miles Durham, 1B Matt Hague, and 2B Corey Wimberly. Salazar struck out again to lead off the 4th inning. Thorman singled into right field, then with two strikes on Guez, Thorman took off to try to steal second base. Guez swung and missed on strike three, and as he finished his swing, he stumbled a bit, causing his bat to come around and hit C Dusty Brown. Brown was in the middle of throwing to second base as he was hit by the bat, and it caused his throw to go off-target. Guez was out on the strikeout, and since he was already out, the penalty for the batter interference ruling was that the base runner Thorman was also called out at second base.
Corey Wimberly congratulates John Bowker on his 2-run homer in the 4th inning.
Indianapolis Indians 10, Toledo Mud Hens 4
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It was a good night for hitting, at least for the Indians, tonight at Victory Field. The Tribe posted 13 hits, 10 more than they allowed the Mud Hens, as they easily defeated Toledo to even up this 5-game series at 2 games each. The Indians had scored only one run in each of their last two games, but tonight, all but one member of the Indians’ line-up scored at least one run, and all but two had at least one hit. SS Jordy Mercer (photo), who did not have a hit, scored one run. CF Anthony Norman, who had neither a hit nor a run scored, drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. 2B Corey Wimberly and DH Dusty Brown each smacked 3 hits, while LF John Bowker and C Kris Watts had 2 hits each.
The Tribe scored in each of the first 5 innings:
In the 1st — Wimberly led off with a double down the left field line, which landed about a foot inside the foul line and continued down to the left field corner. Toledo LF Timo Perez had to fight the sun a bit, and had a little trouble tracking it down, so Wimberly made it into second base easily. Mercer was hit in the back as he ducked away from the first pitch from Toledo starter LJ Gagnier. A ground out to first by Bowker pushed Wimberly to third and Mercer to second. Then rehabbing Pedro Alvarez, who played third base today, snuck a single between the Mud Hens’ first- and second-basemen and into right field, scoring both Wimberly and Mercer for a 2-0 lead. Two fly outs ended the inning.
In the 2nd — RF Miles Durham led off with a blast into the right-center field gap, past the diving Toledo CF (and former Indy Indian) Jeff Salazar. Once the ball got past Salazar’s desperate reach, it bounced to the wall, and Durham had all the time in the world to motor around and into third base standing. Brown ran the count full, fouled off five more pitches, then doubled down the left field line to almost the same spot as Wimberly hit in the 1st inning. That brought in Durham to boost the lead to 3-0. Norman bounced back to the mound, where Gagnier whirled and caught Brown in between second and third bases. Brown dodged back and forth long enough so that Norman could reach second base before he was tagged out. Norman reached as far as third on Wimberly’s ground out, but a strikeout ended the inning.
In the 3rd — With one out, Alvarez worked a walk, as ball four bounced about two feet in front of the plate. 1B Matt Hague hit the Indians’ third double down the left field line, just barely fair, which ducked under the bullpen bench so that Time Perez had to dig it out. Alvarez was running “carefully” on his pretty-much-healed-up quad (photo), but manager Dean Treanor did not want to take any chances, so he held Alvarez at third. Watts followed with a single lined into center field, picking up his first two AAA level RBI, as both Alvarez and Hague scored. Durham hit a sharp bouncer toward third base, which bounced off former Indy Indian 3B Argenis Diaz’s glove and into left field. It was a 2-base error, putting Durham on second base and moving Watts to third. Brown’s long fly ball into right field became a sacrifice fly, bringing in Watts from third, as the throw in from Hens’ RF Ben Guez was way wide of the plate. Indians up, 6-0.
Toledo Mud Hens 7, Indianapolis Indians 1
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Former Indy Indians Argenis Diaz and Jeff Salazar gave the Mud Hens both offensive and defensive boosts to help defeat the Indians at Fifth-Third Field in Toledo, Ohio tonight.
Brian Burres (photo) suffered his of the season, going 7 innings and allowing 3 runs on 7 hits, with no walks. He began his evening with 4 scoreless innings, giving up just 2 hits — a double to CF Salazar in the 2nd and a single to C Omir Santos in the 3rd.
The Indians put runners on base in each of their first 5 at-bats, but could not get any of them around to score. DH Corey Wimberly opened the game with a double into left field and stole third base. LF John Bowker walked to put runners on the corners. 1B Matt Hague bounced into an around-the-horn double play, started by 3B Diaz, to end the inning without a run scoring. SS Jordy Mercer reached base on Diaz’s fielding error in the 2nd inning, but was immediately erased when 3B Andy Marte bounced into a double play, again started by Diaz. RF Miles Durham also walked in that inning, and was left on base.
2B Brian Friday doubled with two outs in the 3rd inning, then Mercer walked and Marte lined a single into left field in the 4th inning. The first two Tribe batters reached base in the 5th, CF Gorkys Hernandez on a throwing error by Toledo SS Cale Iorg, and Wimberly on a fielder’s choice by Toledo starter Fu-Te Ni. Wimberly moved to second on the fielders’ choice as Hernandez was out at third. Wimberly stole third base and Friday walked, again giving the Tribe runners on the corners. And again, a double play ended the inning without a run scoring.
Syracuse Chiefs 5, Indianapolis Indians 4
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The Indians were one out away from a win at Alliance Bank Park in Syracuse, NY tonight, but a two-out rally led to a walk-off for the Chiefs.
The Tribe went into the bottom of the 9th with a 4-3 lead, and Justin Thomas (photo) in from the bullpen. Thomas got two quick outs, with a ground out and a strikeout. Then he gave up a soft looper into center field by Syracuse 2B Steve Lombardozzi. 3B Matt Antonelli singled on a grounder up the middle, moving Lombardozzi to second base. Thomas was relieved by Jose Ascanio, so that the righty Ascanio could face the right-handed RF Jesus Valdez. Valdez lifted a fly ball into the right-center gap. Tribe RF Andrew Lambo gave chase, and after a long run he made a desperate dive — but could not come up with the ball. The ball got past him, and turned into a 2-RBI double, scoring Lombardozzi with the tying run and Antonelli with the winning run.
Rudy Owens made the start for the Tribe. He had missed his last turn for a start, due to a bruise on his hand, suffered when a come-backer hit him while on the mound. Owens worked around a fielding error by SS Pedro Ciriaco and a walk to Jesus Valdez in the 1st inning, escaping the jam with the help of a timely around-the-horn double play, 3B Andy Marte to 2B Brian Friday to 1B Matt Hague. With one out in the 2nd inning, LF Jeff Frazier and Indiana University product SS Seth Bynum hit back-to-back doubles. Frazier scored to put the Chiefs onto the scoreboard. After a fly out, Syracuse starter JD Martin singled through to left field, and Bynum raced around from second base. But LF John Bowker’s throw to C Kris Watts was on target, and Watts tagged out Bynum at the plate for the third out of the inning. Syracuse manager Randy Knorr argued the call at the plate, but only got himself ejected by plate umpire Chad Whitson for his efforts.
Indianapolis Indians 7, Syracuse Chiefs 3
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Brian Friday (photo) was not even in the Indians’ starting line-up today, but he ended up being the big basher for the night as the Indians defeated the Chiefs at Alliance Bank Park in Syracuse, NY. The Indians came from behind, scoring in three of the last four innings, and posting 14 hits. CF Gorkys Hernandez went 4-for-4 with a double and three singles, and RF Miles Durham had a triple and two singles, plus 3 RBI.
Sean Gallagher won his 3rd game of the season (3-8 record), going 5 innings and allowing 2 runs (one earned). He gave up a double in each of the first three innings. Chiefs’ 2B Steve Lombardozzi doubled and was left stranded in the 1st, and C Jhonatan Solano doubled in the 2nd, and was left on base, along with LF Gregor Blanco, who was hit by a pitch. The double in the 3rd inning brought Gallagher some trouble, though. Rehabbing major leaguer Rick Ankiel doubled into right field, then was sacrifice bunted to third base by Lombardozzi. SS Matt Antonelli drove in Ankiel with a sacrifice fly. Ankiel also reached second base in the 5th due to a fielding error when RF Miles Durham dropped his fly ball. Lombardozzi again put down a sacrifice bunt, moving Ankiel to third. This time Antonelli brought Ankiel home with an RBI single lined into center field.
The Indians had one batter reach base in each of the first five innings. SS Jordy Mercer was hit by a pitch in the top of the 1st. Hernandez hit his lined his first single into left field to lead off the top of the 3rd, and 1B Matt Hague doubled into right field in the 3rd. Hernandez’s second single came in the 5th inning. None of them were able to come around to score. And to possibly make it worse : Mercer was able to return to the field after being hit by the pitch (?hand or arm?), but he was not going to be able to swing the bat, so Friday came in to pinch-hit for Mercer in the 3rd, then remained in the game at shortstop.