Daily Archives: April 12, 2011
Joe Beimel pitched one quick inning
Toledo Mud Hens 4, Indianapolis Indians 2
It was a beautiful afternoon at Victory Field, with sunny skies and a little wind, but not a happy afternoon for the Indianapolis Indians, who lost the second game of a short 2-game series to the Toledo Mud Hens. Even with the wind blowing in for most of the game, two Mud Hens and one Indian were able to blast home runs, and those accounted for half of each team's runs.
Brian Burres (photo) got the start for the Indians. He gave up just two hits over his first 5 innings -- but both of those were solo home runs. The first homer came off the bat of LF Scott Thorman with one out in the top of the 2nd inning, sailing over the right field wall. RF Andrew Lambo made a leap -- but he would have had to have been another 6 feet taller to have had any chance. Burres hit SS Cale Iorg with a pitch (right foot) after the homer, then retired the next 9 batters he faced. With one out in the 5th, CF Clete Thomas also homered over the right field wall.
The Indians had managed just 3 hits off Toledo starter Andy Oliver by the end of the 5th inning. LF Alex Presley slipped a single through the hole into right field in the top of the 1st, but was left on base. 2B Pedro Ciriaco walked on 4 pitches and stole second base in the 3rd, but he was not careful taking his lead off second base and was caught too far away from the base. A brief rundown, 1-5-4-1, and he was out.
SS Chase d'Arnaud (photo below) led off the 4th inning with a low liner down the right field line. The ball bounced under the bench in the Mud Hens' bullpen, and RF Andy Dirks just looked at the bench and lifted his arms into the air. Sorry, Dirks, this isn't the Wrigley Field ivy -- the bullpen benches in Victory Field are in play, and you don't get to just bail out like that. He realized his mistake after a couple of seconds, and dove under the bench for the ball, but by then d'Arnaud had rounded second and was heading into third base. Unfortunately, the Indians could not take advantage of the man on third and no outs. Oliver struck out both Presley and DH Andy Marte, then got 1B Matt Hague to ground out, leaving d'Arnaud still on third.
3B Josh Harrison had the only home run for the Indians. With one out in the bottom of the 5th, he blasted another long fly ball to the left field wall -- just a little to the left and two feet further than his bomb last night, which ended up bouncing on the narrow top of the scoreboard. This one definitely went over the wall, onto the grass, and into the hands of some of the students who were sitting on the berm.
The only other Indians' batter to reach base against Oliver was CF Gorkys Hernandez, who got on when his grounder to second skipped up and off the glove of 2B Scott Sizemore. Hernandez stole second base, but a short fly out and two strikeouts left him stranded. Oliver struck out a total of 8 Indians' hitters in his 6 innings of work. He allowed one walk along with those 3 hits, and he threw 101 pitches (65 strikes).
Three wins for the Pirates' lower minor league teams on Tuesday:
Altoona Curve 2, Akron Aeros 0
Starter Bryan Morris threw 6 shutout innings to lead the Curve over the Aeros in Akron. Morris scattered 4 hits and a walk, while striking out 3 for his first win of the season. The only real trouble he had was in the bottom of the 1st, when rehabbing Grady Sizemore began the inning with a walk. After two grounder force outs, a single, Akron had runners on first and second. A single lined into center field had the runner from second charging for home, but CF Starling Marte fired in to C Eric Fryer, who tagged out the runner at the plate. Morris sailed through his remaining 5 innings, allowing just two more hits -- singles in the 2nd and the 5th. Brian Leach, Michael Dubee, and Noah Krol each pitched one scoreless inning of relief. Leach and Dubee each allowed one walk, but Dubee struck out the other three batters he faced. Krol earned his second Save of the season.
Both of the Curve's runs scored in the 3rd inning. 3B Jeremy Farrell began the rally by being hit by a pitch. Fryer singled, and RF Jose Hernandez sacrifice bunted both runners into scoring position. 2B Brock Holt grounded to first, but a fielding error let him reach safely and gave Farrell the chance to score. An RBI grounder by Marte brougth in Fryer with the second run. Marte stole second base and moved to third on a wild pitch, but the inning ended before he could come around to score.
Marte singled after Holt walked in the 5th inning, and both Farrell and Fryer singled in the 7th, but neither of those threats yielded any runs. Farrell lined into right field in the 9th, and rounded second easily, but was thrown out when he tried to stretch it into a triple. He would have scored if he'd stopped at second, because Fryer followed with his own double. Fryer was 3-for-4 in the game, and Farrell went 2-for-3.
Indianapolis Indians 5, Toledo Mud Hens 1
The new Max Schumacher Victory Bell finally rang out a win for the Indianapolis Indians tonight, as they beat the Toledo Mud Hens at Victory Field. The Bell (and Mr. Schumacher, who had the honor of ringing it for the first time) had to wait through the Indians' 4-game series against the Columbus Clippers for the chance to ring, but the losing streak ended tonight, behind the stellar pitching by starter Rudy Owens and an exciting 6th inning.
Owens (photo) made his AAA debut tonight and earned the win with 7 innings of work, allowing one run on 7 hits, no walks, and with 5 strikeouts. He gave up one hit in 5 of his innings, two hits in the 7th, and no hits in the 4th. Unfortunately, one of the hits he gave up was a solo home run, to Toledo CF Clete Thomas in the 2nd. It was a no-doubter, which sailed over the iron fence beyond the berm behind right field, and bounced down onto West Street (though at least not while the fire trucks were racing past).
Owens looked completely in control all night. He needed only 83 pitches (58 strikes) to get through 7 innings. He did not go deep into any counts until the 6th inning, and even then threw only 14 pitches in each of the 6th and 7th innings. He got some help from his friends behind him, including a nice running catch by LF Alex Presley in the 6th, and a backhanded stop deep in the hole by SS Chase d'Arnaud with a catch in the dirt by 1B Matt Hague. In the post-game interview, Owens said that he was pleased to get that first AAA start out of the way. "The first AAA start is always one of those big deals -- same with last year in AA with the first start. I got out there and had to face (Stephen) Strasburg, and it couldn't be more nerve-wracking. By just getting that first win out of the way and doing well, I showed myself that I can compete here..... Throwing strikes is the key for me because this team (Toledo) likes to swing and just got to let them get themselves out."
The Indians' batters also posted one hit per inning for the first four innings of the game. Alex Presley continued his torrid hitting with two singles -- a line drive into center field in the 1st and a grounder through the hole into left field in the 4th. He also stole second base in the 4th. RF Andrew Lambo picked up his first hit of the season in the 2nd inning, when he grounded to short, but Toledo SS Cale Iorg bobbled the ball as his foot slipped, then threw wide to first base, giving Lambo the extra split second he needed to reach first safely. Presley and Lambo were left stranded on base, but when CF Gorkys Hernandez singled in the 3rd, he was thrown out trying to steal second base.
One win on Monday night in the Pirates' lower minor leagues:
Akron Aeros 6, Altoona Curve 5
CF Starling Marte had 3 hits for the Curve in their loss in Akron. Starter Aaron Pribanic gave up only a double over the first 3 innings, then surrendered a solo homer in the 4th. Akron scored 2 runs in the 5th, when rehabbing Cleveland Indians' star Grady Sizemore doubled after two singles.
The Curve had only one hit, a single by LF Quincy Latimore, in their first 5 innings, though they also had two batters reach on errors -- 2B Brock Holt in the 3rd and C Tony Sanchez in the 4th. Down 3-0 going into the top of the 6th, the Curve got going. With one out, Marte beat out a bunt single, and SS Jordy Mercer walked. Sanchez also beat out an infield single to third to load the bases, and 1B Miles Durham's line drive into left field brought in Marte, leaving the bases loaded again. Latimore plated Mercer with a sacrifice fly. Then 3B Jeremy Farrell drove in Sanchez and Durham when he tripled into center field, giving the Curve a 4-3 lead.
Tim Alderson relieved Pribanic to begin the 6th inning. He gave up two singles in that inning, but kept the Aeros from scoring. Akron also singled twice in the bottom of the 7th, including one by Sizemore, but this time, a throwing error by Holt on the force attempt let in one unearned run. After a ground out, a double drove in two more runs, also unearned, and Akron had the lead back, 6-4.
The Curve added one more run in the 8th, when Latimore walked, then came around to score on Farrell's double into right field. Walks to DH Eric Fryer and RF Brad Chalk loaded the bases again, but the Curve could not capitalize, and all three were left stranded. Tom Boleska finished the game for the Curve with a 1-2-3 inning in the 8th. Alderson was charged with the loss, as well as a Blown Save.