5-Run Inning Lifts Clippers Over Tribe

Columbus Clippers� 10,� Indianapolis Indians� 5 ..�� (box)

IMG_4254The Indianapolis Indians posted 13 hits this evening at Huntington Park in Columbus, Ohio, with every member of the batting order but one collecting at least one hit.� But the Clippers posted 14 hits, and added a 5-run 7th inning, to sail past the Indians for the win.� The Louisville Bats also won today, beating the Toledo Mud Hens 8-0, so the Bats remain 1.5 games ahead of Columbus in the International League Western Division, with one week left in the season.

Indians’ starter Mike Crotta (photo) struggled in each inning he pitched, and after 4+ innings, he had already thrown 90 pitches (56 strikes).� He had two runners on base in the 1st inning, but got out of that jam without a run scoring.� With one out, CF Ezequiel Carrera reached base on a throwing error by SS Pedro Ciriaco. Carrera stole second base, and after 2B Cord Phelps walked, both Carrera and Phelps pulled off a double steal to put both into scoring position.� Crotta bore down and struck out 1B Wes Hodges, then ended the inning when DH Jordan Brown flied out.

That was Crotta’s only scoreless inning.� He gave up one run in each of the next three innings and was responsible for 2 runs in the 5th.� 3B Jared Goedert led off the 2nd inning with a single, and he also stole second base.� SS Drew Sutton walked, then LF Matt McBride reached on a tapper back to the mound that Crotta could not handle.� Goedert scored from second base on the play, to give the Clippers a 1-0 lead.

The Indians had gone down in order in the first two innings, but they came right back with 3 runs in the top of the 3rd.� With one out, Pedro Ciriaco doubled into left field.� 2B Brian Friday worked a walk, then LF Kevin Melillo loaded the bases with a line drive up the middle for a single.� 3B Akinori Iwamura lifted a long fly ball into left field, which Columbus LF McBride had to keep chasing back and back.. but he caught it on the warning track for a sacrifice fly, as it let Ciriaco score from third base to tie the score.� CF Alex Presley grounded through the right side of the infield for an RBI single that brought in both Friday and Melillo.� DH Brandon Moss lined another single into right field, but a fly out ended the inning.� The Indians had taken what would be their only lead of the game, 3-1.

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Four Tribe Pitchers Combine For Shutout

Indianapolis Indians� 8,� Columbus Clippers� 0 ..��� (box)

IMG_4157Four Indianapolis Indians pitchers combined to shut out the Columbus Clippers at Huntington Park in Columbus, Ohio.� They held the Clippers to a total of 4 hits and 2 walks.� CF Alex Presley supported them with 3 hits, and both 1B Doug Bernier (photo) and RF Brandon Moss contributed 3 RBI.

The Indians got things started in the top of the 1st with a one-out single by 3B Akinori Iwamura, and after the second out, RF Brandon Moss launched his 21st home run of the season, bringing in Iwamura for a 2-0 lead.� They added 2 more runs in the 2nd.� With one out, SS Pedro Ciriaco smacked a grounder towards third base.� The ball glanced off the glove of Columbus 3B Argenis Reyes and past him down the left field line, and Ciriaco cruised into second base with a double.� After a strikeout by C Jason Jaramillo, 2B Brian Friday lifted another double into center field, and Ciriaco came around to score from second base.� Doug Bernier followed with a line drive single into left field, and Friday also scored.� Bernier stole second base, but was left there when a ground out ended the inning.� The Indians were up, 4-0.

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IMG_3940Charlie Morton was originally listed as the starting pitcher tonight, but he was recalled by the Pirates so that he can made the start for them tomorrow.� Dana Eveland (photo) made the spot start in Morton’s place.� Eveland had to work around one runner on base in each of the first three innings.� 2B Drew Sutton lined a single into left field in the bottom of the 1st, but Eveland got 1B Wes Hodges to bounce into an around the horn double play, Iwamura to Friday to Bernier.� DH Jared Goedert walked with two outs in the 2nd, but Eveland struck out former Indy Indian Luke Carlin to end the inning.� Clippers’ SS Josh Rodriguez reached base on a fielding error by Brian Friday to begin the 3rd inning, but Eveland induced three grounders, again keeping the Clippers scoreless.

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Tough First Inning Sinks Indians

Toledo Mud Hens� 8,� Indianapolis Indians� 2 ..����� (box)

IMG_4387Five runs in the 1st inning gave the Toledo Mud Hens a lead they would not give up, as they defeated the Indianapolis Indians at Victory Field tonight.

Joe Martinez (photo) had to work through a tough 1st inning on this start.� The first batter of the game, 2B Justin Henry, fouled off the first two pitches for an 0-2 count, then took 4 straight balls, for a walk.� SS Cale Iorg grounded to third, forcing Henry out at second, but Iorg was safe at first.� 1B Max Leon dropped down a sacrifice bunt to move Iorg to second base.� Then, with two outs, LF Jeff Frazier smacked a 2-run homer over the left field wall.� CF Ben Guez followed the homer with a single, and former Indy Indian C Robinzon Diaz reached on an error when Martinez could not handle the tapper back to the mound.� DH Michael Bertram belted a 3-run homer over the right-center field wall, and the Mud Hens had a 5-0 lead.

The Indians got one run back in the bottom of the 2nd when four consecutive batters reached base. With one out, LF Mitch Jones lined a single into left field, then advanced to second base when Robinzon Diaz let a pitch get past him.� C Erik Kratz and DH Brian Myrow both ran the count full then took a walk, loading the bases.� SS Pedro Ciriaco lined another single into left field, scoring Jones from third base.� A foul pop and a grounder back to the mound ended the inning with three base runners still on.

Martinez got through the 2nd and 3rd innings without allowing a run to score, though he gave up back-to-back singles (Henry and Iorg) in the 2nd, and a walk to Bertram in the 3rd.� The Mud Hens picked up another run in the top of the 4th, when RF Christopher White led off with a solo home run.� Henry and Iorg singled again after the home run, but a double play and a ground out got Martinez out of that jam.

The Mud Hens went down in order for Martinez in the 5th, but came right back at him in the 6th.� RF Shawn Roof and Christopher White led off with back-to-back singles.� A ground out to first moved both runners into scoring position, and Cale Iorg’s line drive double into left field brought both Roof and White in to score, giving the Mud Hens an 8-1 lead.� That was the end of Martinez’s night.� He had allowed 8 runs (5 earned) on 11 hits and 2 walks, with 3 strikeouts.� He threw 93 pitches, 58 for strikes.

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Jakubauskas Is Sharp In Start

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Jakubauskas on the mound

Indianapolis Indians� 2,� Toledo Mud Hens� 1 ..���� (box)

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A pitching duel erupted at Victory Field tonight, and it ended with the Indians and starter Chris Jakubauskas (photo above) on top.� The win gives the Indians an 11 – 9 game lead of the season series.

Chris Jakubauskas (photo) made his first start as an Indian since early April.� He was told in advance that he’d be limited to about 60 pitches.� It turned out that he threw 61, 41 of which were strikes.� He was clearly sailing, with his curve ball working well.� Jakubauskas said after the game that his sinker was also working well for him, and that was a bit unusual. He allowed only 3 hits and one walk, and struck out 5 batters.

Jakubauskas gave up a single to Mud Hens’ 2B Scott Sizemore with two outs in the 1st inning, but ended the inning with a grounder force out.� He worked around a walk to 1B Michael Bertram in the 2nd inning, finishing that inning with a strikeout.

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(Photo:� John Bowker and Brian Myrow)

The only inning in which Jakubauskas had any trouble was the 3rd.� Mud Hens’ 3B Shawn Roof led off the inning with a triple into right-center field.� RF John Bowker went way to his right to try to catch up to the line drive, but it got just past him and rolled all the way to the wall, as Roof cruised into third base.� Toledo RF Justin Henry follwed with a twisting single into left field, bringing in Roof, to give Toledo a 1-0 lead.�

But that was all the scoring the Mud Hens would do.� In fact, it was all the anything they would do until the 9th inning.� After Henry’s single, Jakubauskas retired the next three batters, finishing the 3rd inning with two strikeouts.� Then he retired the next six batters he faced, including a strikeout in each of the 4th and 5th innings.� With the pitch limit imposed on him, he knew that would be all, but he looked as if he could have gone at least another inning if needed.

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Bullpen Falters As Indians Lose Late

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Alex Presley is back to the bag safely

Louisville Bats� 6,� Indianapolis Indians� 3 ..���� (box)

IMG_4467It was a tough night for the Indians’ bullpen, as they stumbled in the last two innings, giving the win to the Louisville Bats at Victory Field.� The Indians wasted an excellent starting effort by Charlie Morton (photo), who pitched 6 shutout innings and allowed only 4 hits.� The Indians posted 5 hits, while the Bats out-hit them with 13 knocks.

Morton got some help from his defense, but he cruised along in this start.� He faced only the minimum over the first three innings, and only one batter over the minimum in the first five innings.� He began each of the first three innings with a strikeout, and struck out one more batter after that.

The second batter in the top of the 1st, SS Chris Valaika, slipped a single up through the middle of the infield, where 2B Brian Friday would have been if the Indians’ defense was not in a shift position.� The next batter, 1B Yonder Alonso, also grounded up the middle, right over the second base bag.� SS Pedro Ciriaco made a diving stop, and as he hit the ground stretched out prone behind second base, the ball fell out of his glove,� Ciriaco scrambled to pick it up, then still on the ground, flipped the ball back and lateral to Friday covering second base.� Friday was at the bag, and he made an outstanding turn, and fired the ball to 1B John Bowker, just in time to beat Alonso to the first base bag.

Morton retired the side in order in the 2nd and 3rd innings, then gave up a lead-off single to CF Dave Sappelt in the 4th — the ball glanced off 3B Mitch Jones’ glove and into left field.� But again the infield stepped up.� Valaika grounded to third base, where Jones started an around-the-horn (5-4-3) double play to erase Sappelt.� Alonso almost put the Bats onto the scoreboard with a long fly ball to left field.� The ball hit the top of the left field wall, missing a home run by inches, then bounced into left field for a double.� Morton did not erase Alonso from the base path, but instead struck out the next batter, RF Wladimir Balentien, to end the inning.

IMG_4480The Bats also went down in order in the 5th, and that inning ended with an odd play.� 2B Wilkin Castillo bunted a 1-1 pitch to right in front of the plate, but as he was moving out of the batters’ box, he came in contact with the ball, so was called out.� C Jason Jaramillo, as the closest fielder, gets credit for the put-out in that situation.

The only time Charlie Morton had two base runners on base at the same time was in the 6th inning.� With one out, Bats’ pitcher Chad Reineke dribbled a little grounder (not a bunt) along the third base line, just fair.� By the time Morton and Jaramillo got over to it, Morton picked up the ball, but he had no play at first, and Reineke was on with an infield hit.� Sappelt followed with a grounder to short, and it looked like Morton was going to have yet another base runner erased with a double play.� Pedro Ciriaco made the scoop, but he got excited and his throw to second missed Brian Friday entirely, and sailed into right field.� Reineke advanced to third and Sappelt to second on the error.� With the Indians leading 2-0 at that point, those two runners in scoring position represented the tying runs, and the go-ahead run was at the plate.� Pitching coach Dean Treanor came out for a little chat with Morton (photo).� Then Morton got Valaika to ground softly to third base, and the runners had to hold up.� Another grounder by Alonso to short ended the inning for Morton, and without a run scoring.

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