Louisville Batts 5, Indianapolis Indians 2
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The Indianapolis Indians and Louisville Bats played 6.5 scoreless innings at Louisville Slugger Field, before each team scored in its last two at-bats. The Bats’ first rally was sparked by their winning pitcher Daryl Thompson, and the second rally, in the bottom of the 8th, was aided by 3 Indians’ errors. The Tribe was not able to catch up, and the Bats took the first game of this 4-game away-and-home series.
Justin Wilson (photo) made the start for the Indians, coming off a tough start last Saturday in Toledo. He got through the first two innings rather quickly, allowing just one hit, a double by Bats’ 1B Todd Frazier in the 2nd. Wilson worked his way out of a bases-loaded jam in the 3rd. 3B Michael Griffin reached base when his Tribe counterpart 3B Pedro Alvarez bobbled his grounder for an error. After two outs, 2B Chris Valaika grounded to short, where SS Jordy Mercer also had trouble with bobbles on the scoop. Valaika reached base ahead of Mercer’s throw, and the play was ruled a single. LF Yonder Alonso walked to load the bases. Wilson bore down and got C Devin Mesoraco to fly out to RF Anthony Norman, to escape the inning without a run scoring.
Wilson worked around a single by Frazier in the 4th inning, then got into another jam in the 5th. He walked the opposing pitcher Thompson, and hit Valaika with a pitch. With two outs, Mesoraco hit a screaming liner right back at Wilson. The ball hit Wilson’s glove and dropped, but Wilson was so surprised that it took him a moment to realize that the ball had been stopped and had not sailed into the outfield. Then he looked up, thinking that maybe the ball was still in the air, then finally looked down — and still took a moment to realize that the ball was at his feet. Mesoraco was safe on first, and the bases were loaded, but Wilson had kept the ball from going into the outfield and allowing at least 2 runs to score. He ended the inning with a ground out by RF Jeremy Hermida, leaving the bases full of Bats for the second time in the game.
That was all for Wilson, on a hot and humid night. He had thrown 97 pitches (57 strikes), and thrown 5 scoreless innings, allowing 4 hits and 2 walks, with 5 strikeouts. Wilson was relieved by former Bat (just a couple of weeks ago) Steven Jackson, who retired his old teammates in order in the 6th.
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.
Indianapolis Indians 4, Toledo Mud Hens 3
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After 5 scoreless innings with a tie score, the Indians pushed across a run in the top of the 12th, then held on for the win over the Mud Hens at Fifth-Third Field in Toledo, Ohio.
With two outs in the top of the 12th, 2B/3B Brian Friday worked a walk. LF John Bowker (photo) lashed a double into the right-center field alley, over the head of Toledo RF Ben Guez, and off the wall. Friday was off and running with the pitch, and he rounded third and headed for the plate as Guez chased down the ball. He crossed the plate well ahead of the throw, scoring the go-ahead run for the Indians.
The Mud Hens jumped right on Tribe starter Justin Wilson in the bottom of the 1st inning. Lead-off batter DH Will Rhymes with a single, and LF Timo Perez doubled, putting runners on the corners. Rhymes scored on an RBI single into right field by rehabbing 2B Carlos Guillen, and Perez came in on an RBI single by 1B Ryan Strieby, for a 2-0 lead. Strieby stole second base and 3B Danny Worth walked. Wilson got out of the inning when he struck out RF Scott Thorman, and C Kris Watts fired down to third base, throwing out Strieby trying to steal third. SS Cale Iorg added a run in the 2nd inning on a solo homer, giving the Mud Hens a 3-0 lead.
Wilson went on to pitch 4 more innings, scattering 3 more singles (by Rhymes, Iorg, and Strieby) and two walks (Guillen and Strieby), but he did not allow another run. He threw 91 pitches, with 52 strikes.
Indianapolis Indians 3, Syracuse Chiefs 0
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Thursday was a very good day for Indianapolis Indians’ 1B Matt Hague (photo). He was named to the International League’s All-Star Team in the morning, then led his team to a victory over the Chiefs at Alliance Bank Park in Syracuse, NY in the evening.
This won’t be Hague’s first All-Star Game — he participated in the 2010 Eastern League All-Star Game. He is the Indians’ only player on this year’s IL All-Star Team, though Tribe manager Dean Treanor will be serving the IL as a bench coach. The Louisville Bats have 3 position players in the IL’s starting line-up, plus one reserve player. The Durham Bulls have 2 position players among the starters, plus one reserve player. Lehigh Valley and Columbus both have 2 pitchers named to the team. Former Indy Indian C Erik Kratz, now with Lehigh Valley, has been named to the IL All-Star team for the third season in a row. In his first AAA All-Star Game, Kratz was named the most valuable player, and in last season’s game, he was notified of his major league call-up in the middle of the game and his astonished response was on national television. There will be a familiar face on the Pacific Coast League’s All-Star Team — LHP Dana Eveland, who pitched for the Indians and the Pirates will be represeting the Albuquerque Isotopes (Dodgers).
Hague continued his day with a 3-for-3 night at the plate, including a double, and he was responsible for driving in 2 of the Indians’ 3 runs. C Kris Watts also had a fine night, with a pair of doubles. Pitchers Garrett Olson and Steven Jackson combined for a 2-hit shutout.
Brad Lincoln made the start for the Indians, and was charged with his 7th loss.
Pawtucket Red Sox 12, Indianapolis Indians 3
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Two big innings by the Pawtucket gave the Red Sox plenty of in-game fireworks to warm up the crowd for the post-game fireworks at Victory Field tonight. The PawSox scored 4 runs in the 2nd and 5 runs in the 8th, and their total of 12 runs came on just 10 hits.
Indians’ starter Brad Lincoln mowed down the first five batters he faced, striking out three of them. But with two outs in the top of the 2nd, Lincoln suddenly got into trouble. DH Ryan Lavarnway ripped a double into the right-center field gap for a double. RF Nate Spears lined a single into center field, which CF Gorkys Hernandez fired back to the plate, as Lavarnway rounded third and headed for the plate. The throw was on-target and on-time, but C Eric Fryer couldn’t keep hold of it as he went to make the tag. The ball dropped to the ground, and Lavarnway slid across the plate safely. Lincoln walked C Luis Expositon on four pitches, then 2B Brent Dlugach rocketed a double over RF Alex Presley’s head and off the top of the right field wall. That brought in Spears, but Presley’s strong throw in from right made Exposition hold up at third. With both runners in scoring position, CF Che-Hsuan Lin blooped a single into short center field, which dropped in between three Tribe fielders, brining in both Exposito and Dlugach, for a 4-0 lead.
Hernandez (photo) came through with a clutch double to help the Indians cut the PawSox lead in half in the bottom of the inning. With one out, 3B Josh Harrison, just back from Pittsburgh, took a 4-pitch walk from Pawtucket starter Kyle Weiland. Fryer grounded out, then 2B Josh Rodriguez also walked. Hernandez followed with a double off the top of the wall in the right-center field gap, and both Joshes raced around to score. The rally ended when Presley popped out to second, leaving Hernandez stranded, but the Tribe had made progress: 4-2.