IMG_2367Finally in the 5th inning, the Indians made their hits count. �With one out, pitcher Jeremy Powell lined a single into right field. Brandon Moss followed with a walk. �A high pop by Neil Walker, with the infield fly rule invoked, gave the Tribe their second out, but didn’t move the runners along. �Then Pedro Alvarez (photo) smacked a fly ball over the head of Iron Pigs’ RF Ransom and all the way to the wall, for a double that scored both Powell and Moss.

Brandon Jones blasted the game’s only home run to begin the 6th inning. �After the game, Jones said that he had been “looking for a curve ball, and he (Iron Pigs’ pitcher Joe Savery) gave it to me, and I put a good swing on it. �I knew it was going, but I didn’t know it would go that far!”

The Indians added one more insurance run in the 8th. �Iron Pigs’ reliever Ehren Wassermann (a member of Team USA for last fall’s 2009 World Baseball Cup), came on to pitch, and he had trouble with his control. �He walked Steve Pearce (on 5 pitches). �Brandon Jones flied out, then Wassermann commited a balk, moving Pearce to second. �Then a pitch bounced into and out of C Hoover’s glove, allowing Pearce to move to third base. �Wassermann tried to pick Pearce off third base, but he forgot that he needed to have someone to throw to — he threw to third, but 3B Neil Sellers wasn’t there. �The ball sailed into left field, and Pearce scored easily with the fourth Indians’ run. �Wassermann hit Erik Kratz with a pitch, then got 2B Brian Friday to fly out. �SS�Argenis Diaz doubled into right field, and Kratz advanced to third base. �Pinch-hitter Brian Myrow was also hit by a pitch, loading the bases, and at that point, Wassermann was relieved by former Indy Indian (2006) Brandon Duckworth. �Duckworth ended the inning by getting Brandon Moss to strikeout with the bases loaded.

Vinnie Chulk pitched a perfect 8th inning for the Indians, including one strikeout. �After some tough early outings this season, Chulk has not allowed a run in his last three appearances. �Jean Machi came on for the top of the 9th. �With one out, Machi gave up a double to Cody Ransom, then walked Neil Sellers. �Paul Hoover grounded to second base, where Brian Friday made the scoop and throw to second base, where Argenis Diaz got the force out on Sellers. �But Diaz’s throw to first base was wide on the outfield side of the base. �Hoover made it all the way to second on the error, and Ransom scored an unearned run. �A fly out to Brandon Jones ended the game without further runs scoring.

IMG_2589The win puts the Tribe back above the .500 mark, to 13-12 (.520) and ties them with the Toledo Mud Hens for second place in the International League Western Division. �They are 2.5 games behind the first-place Columbus Clippers.

Indians’ Hitting Gem of the Game: �Brandon Jones’ (photo) big home run in the 6th inning. �After having missed some time when he was Designated For Assignment and was outrighted to the Indians, Jones missed some more time due to a death in the family. �Tonight was his first game back in action, and he was clearly glad to be back.

Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game: �Also Jones, when he saved at least one run in the 5th inning with his catch of Luis Maza’s sinking line drive. �The runner on second would have scored if that ball had made it past Jones, and the speedy Rich Thompson might have made it around from first to score too.

NOTES:

Neil Walker was lifted in the middle of the 5th inning, after going 0-for-3 at the plate. �No obvious injury, or other problems. �The radio broadcasters did not see him sitting in the dugout after that. �The Pirates said they were going to be calling a position player up some time this week….

UPDATE: Nope, not Walker being called up — it’s Steve Pearce. �He will be joining the Pirates on Tuesday. �The Pirates will likely be sending a pitcher to Indy, either Brian Burres or Brian Bass.

Walker didn’t run out a pop up, so he got to sit down. �It seems like manager Frank Kremblas is trying to make a point, and some of the guys are a little slow on picking it up.

Pitcher Kevin Hart’s season is over. �He is having surgery on his right shoulder tomorrow, by Dr. James Andrews in Alabama.

Go Tribe!

(Photos by Nancy)

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