Tribe Run Down Bison Again; Hughes’ AAA Debut

Indianapolis Indians 12,  Buffalo Bison  6
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IMG_5565The Indians and the Bison held a hit-fest at Coca-Cola Park in Buffalo, NY tonight, with the two teams combining for 30 hits (16 for the Indians and 14 for the Bison).  The Tribe made the better use of their hits, though, and with three 3-run innings, the Tribe came out on top.  SS Chase d’Arnaud went 4-for-5 with a homer and 5 RBI, and RF Miles Durham went 3-for-4 with an RBI.  Rudy Owens (photo) earned his 6th win of the season, with 3 runs on 6 hits and 4 walks.  

The Tribe got onto the scoreboard first, with 3 runs in the top of the 2nd innning.  With one out, C Eric Fryer walked, then after a second out, Owens also walked.  That brought up d’Arnaud, who rocketed a rising line drive over the right-center field wall to give the Indians a 3-0 lead.

Owens got through the first inning allowing only a double by 1B Valentino Pascucci.  He gave the Bison back a run in the 2nd inning.  A single by 3B Zach Lutz, a walk to LF Jason Botts, and a single by C Mike Nickeas loaded the bases.  CF Jesus Feliciano brought in Lutz with a sacrifice fly, to cut the Indians’ lead to 3-1.  A sacrifice bunt by Buffalo starter Mark Cohoon was fielded by Owens, but the throw to first pulled 2B Brian Friday, who was covering, off the bag.  Cohoon was credited with a sacrifice, and Owens was charged with an error.  But with the bases loaded again, Owens got 2B Michael Fisher to fly out to left field.  LF Alex Presley made the catch, then fired the ball in to the plate, where Fryer made the catch and held on to tag out Botts as he tried to tag up and score.  The outfield assist saved at least one run, and possibly more, if the inning had continued.  Durham also made an outfield assist in the 3rd inning.  SS Luis Hernandez walked, then Pascucci lined into right field.  Hernandez tried to go from first to third on the play, but Durham fired in to third base, where 3B Matt Hague mad the tag out.  

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McPherson’s AA Debut; Power Win Two

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

West Virginia Power 6,  Lakewood BlueClaws  1  (completion of suspended game)
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This game was halted by rain last night in the top of the 5th.  The Power had scored one run in the 3rd when C Kawika Emsley-Pai walked, stole second, went to third on an error, and crossed the plate on a ground out.  They rallied again in the 5th, beginning with a single by SS Drew Maggi.  A throwing error on a pick-off attempt put Maggi on third base, and 2B Andy Vasquez brought in Maggi with an RBI single.  Vasquez stole second, and later scored on 1B Justin Howard’s single.  DH Chase Lyles walked just before the game was stopped.  When play resumed today, CF Mel Rojas reached base on an error at second base, which also allowed Howard to score.  That gave the Power a 4-0 lead.

Jameson Taillon’s start was unfortunately cut short by the suspension.  He had pitched 4 scoreless innings, allowing just one hit and hitting one batter, both in the 2nd inning.  Brooks Pounders took the mound on the restart, and he gave up Lakewood’s only run in the 6th.  A single, a stolen base, and another single put runners on the corners.  The next batter bounced into a double play, but the runner from third scored.  Pounders gave up a double in the 7th, but did not let that runner score.  He also struck out 3 batters.  

The Power added more insurance in the top of the 7th.  RF Dan Grovatt led off with a walk, and two wild pitches put him on third base.  Lyles’ RBI single brought Grovatt across the plate.  Rojas also singled, but was caught in a run-down between first and second bases.  Another run scored in the top of the 9th, when Lyles reached on a fielding error, advanced to second on Rojas’ second single, then scored on the second error of the inning.  

Victor Black pitched the final two innings for the Power.  He gave up a single in the 8th, but erased the runner on a double play, then gave up another single in the 9th, but kept Lakewood from scoring.  Pounders earned his 5th win of the season.   

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Veal Moves Up To Altoona, But Curve Bombarded

Sunday action with the Pirates’ lower minor leaguers:

Portland Sea Dogs  12,  Altoona Curve 4
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The Sea Dogs posted 17 hits on their way to 12 runs, scoring in three big innings.  They began with 3 runs in the top of the 1st off Curve starter Aaron Pribanic, who suffered the loss.  A walk, two singles, and two doubles brought in the runs in the 1st.  Portland added a run in the 2nd on a single, two stolen bases, a fielding error, and an RBI ground out.  Pribanic retired the side in order in the next two innings, but gave up one more run in the 5th on three singles.  Pribanic gave up the 5 runs on 8 hits and 2 walks, with 4 strikeouts.  He threw 90 pitches with 61 strikes.  

The Curve were held to 6 hits, and three of them belonged to C Kris Watts, including a solo homer.  SS Jordy Mercer had 2 hits, both solo home runs.  CF Starling Marte’s double was the other run.  Watts singled and 3B Jeremy Farrell was hit by a pitch in th 2nd inning, but both were left on base.  Mercer put the Curve onto the scoreboard with his first home run in the 4th, and Watts also singled after the homer.  

Aaron Thompson pitched a scoreless 6th inning for the Curve, then Donnie Veal, who was just promoted from the Marauders, pitched the 7th.  Veal gave up a solo homer to lead off the 7th, then gave up a single and a 2-run homer, giving Portland an 8-1 lead.  Things got even worse in the 8th, with Diego Moreno on the mound.  a single, a double, and a walk loaded the bases, then a grand slam raised Portland’s lead to 12-1.  

Mercer’s second home run came in the bottom of the 8th, after Marte’s double.  Watts picked up his third hit in the bottom of the 9th, a solo home run, but that was all the Curve could get.   

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Locke Strikes Out 8; Veal Makes A Start

Thursday evening’s action with the Pirates’ lower minor leaguers…

Altoona Curve  5,  Trenton Thunder  1
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Starter Jeff Locke struck out 8 Trenton batters in his 5.1 innings of work, while getting plenty of run support — 3 home runs from his offense.  The only run Locke surrendered came in the bottom of the 2nd, when Trenton loadd the bases on a walk, a hit batter, and a single.  Another walk by Locke forced in the run, then a strikeout and a double play got him out of the inning.  Locke allowed only a walk and a double over the next three innings.  He began the 6th with a pair of walks and a strikeout before being relieved by Diego Moreno.  

Meanwhile, the Curve were pounding out the hits — a total of 15, including 3 by 2B Brock Holt.  Each Curve batter had at least one hit.  1B Matt Curry, who had two hits in the game, began the Curve scoring with a solo home run to lead off the top of the 2nd.  Holt led off the 3rd with a line drive single to short, then moved to second on LF Quincy Latimore’s walk, and scored on SS Jordy Mercer’s RBI single.  

Back-to-back solo homers by Latimore and Mercer added another 2 runs in the 5th inning.  The Curve loaded the bases on three consecutive singles in the 6th — by RF Jose Hernandez, Holt, and CF Brad Chalk, but Latimore struck out to end the inning and leave all three runners on base.  The final Curve run scored in the 8th.  The inning began with back-to-back singles by DH Travis Scott and 3B Greg Picart.  Picart was picked off first and caught stealing, but Scott advanced to third, and he was plated by Hernandez’s sacrifice fly.  Holt also tripled in that inning.  

Moreno finished the 6th inning for Locke with a strikeout and a pop out.  Then he struck out the side in the 7th inning.  Michael Dubee pitched 2 scoreless innings to end the game.  He loaded the bases with a double, a single, and a walk in the 8th, but got out of that jam with a strikeout and a force out.  Then he worked around a single for a scoreless 9th.  

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Power Pitchers Dominate In Early Game; Complete One-Hitter For McPherson

The Power had an early game today, while the Curve and the Marauders are scheduled for the evening:

West Virginia Power  3,  Hickory Crawdads  2  
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Three Power pitchers combined to hold Hickory to just 4 hits in the late-morning start.  Colton Cain earned his 4th win of the season, going 6 innings and allowing 2 runs, only one of which was earned.  He gave up 3 hits and 2 walks, and struck out 5 batters.  Two of those 3 hits came in the top of the 1st — a lead-off single, then after two outs moved the runner to second base, another single when the batter beat out the throw on a grounder to third base.  But Power 1B Justin Howard was paying attention, and he was able to throw from first base back to the plate, where C Elias Diaz tagged out the runner who had rounded third and was trying to score.  

Three consecutive hits began the bottom of the 1st for the Power:  singles by SS Drew Maggi and CF Mel Rojas, and an RBI double by RF Dan Grovatt, who drove in Maggi.  DH Cole White brought in Rojas with an RBI ground out, to give the Power an early 2-1 lead.  

Cain retired the side in order in the 2nd, then began the 3rd by giving up a double.  A sacrifice bunt moved that runner to third base.  The next batter was hit by a pitch, giving Hickory runners on the corners.  Then a wild pitch by Cain and a throwing error on Diaz as he tried to retrieve the ball, let both base runners score, to tie the game.  

The Power put runners on base over the next two innings, but base running problems eliminated the runners — picked off and caught stealing, and being caught off base on a fly out for a double play.  2B Andy Vasquez singled to lead off the 5th, and he too was doubled off first base when Maggi flied out.  Rojas walked after Maggi was out, then Grovatt doubled for the second time in the game, and also drove in his second run, as Maggi gave the Power the lead.  

Cain allowed only 2 walks over his last three innings of work.  Vincent Payne made his first appearance for the Power this season, with 2 scoreless innings.  He retired the side in order in the 7th, then gave up a walk in the 8th, but that runner was caught stealing.  Zac Fuesser pitched the 9th.  He gave up a single, but also picked the runner of first base, and was credited with his first Save.  

The Power had only two base runners over the last 3 innings, when 3B Eric Avila walked and was erased in a double play, and a single by Grovatt, for his third hit of the game, in the 8th.  Grovatt stole second base, but was left on base.   

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