Tag: Akinori Iwamura

Bass Out, Leroux In

A few notes on Monday, as we wait for the Curve to play again....

The Altoona Curve will face off against the Trenton Thunder on Tuesday, to begin the Eastern League championship series.� Curve's Rudy Owens will oppose Andy Pettitte, who is on a rehab assignment from the Yankees.� Sounds unfair, but even Curve manager Matt Walbeck says it's allowed, and they'll be ready for Pettitte.

Alex Presley made a pinch-running appearance for the Pirates this evening in their 1-0 extra-inning loss to the Mets.� Presley came on in the top of the 9th to run for C Chris Snyder, who had walked.� Presley tried to steal second base, but was thrown out.

Neil Walker's hitting streak came to an end at 18 games -- he walked twice, but did not have a hit in the game.� Walker hit .350 while in the streak, including 5 homers and 18 RBI.

John Bowker made another start for the Pirates, this time in right field.� He went 0-for-3 at the plate.

Akinori Iwamura, who spent most of the season with the Indy Indians, has been signed by the Oakland A's.� The A's need some help at third base because of injuries.

The Pirates have designated RHP Brian Bass for assignment.� Bass made 41 appearances (1 start) for the Indianapolis Indians this season, with a 4-4 record and 2 saves and a 3.26 ERA.� He pitched 69 innings for the Tribe, allowing 74 hits and 23 walks, while striking out 53 batters.� He got progressively better over the second half of the season, with a 1.57 ERA over 13 relief appearances in August and September.� Bass made 3 appearances for the Pirates in late April/early May, then was removed from the 40-man roster and returned to Indianapolis.� He was again added to the 40-man roster when the Pirates expanded their roster at the beginning of September, but has made just one relief appearance, allowing one earned run on no hits and 2 walks on Sept 8th against Atlanta.� Overall with the Pirates, Bass pitched 7.1 innings, but allowed 9 hits and 11 runs (10 earned), with 10 walks and 5 strikeouts.

The reason for removing Bass was that the Pirates picked up RHP Chris Leroux on waivers from the Marlins.� The 26-year-old Montreal native opened the 2010 season with the Marlins, and was struggling, then developed a strain in his right elbow.� After a stint on the DL, he joined the AAA New Orleans Zephyrs.� In 18 relief appearances over July and August, Leroux pitched 19.2 innings for the Zephyrs, with a 0-3 record and one save, and a 5.95 ERA.� He walked only 4 batters and struck out 18 batters.� Back with the Marlins after the September call-ups, the righty made 3 more relief appearances, allowing 3 runs in 3 innings, on 5 hits and 2 walks.� The Pirates were interested in a big hurler (he' 6'6") with a strong arm and a lot of strikeouts in AAA, who is also a ground-ball pitcher.

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Wilson Dominates As Curve Take Game 3

Altoona Curve� 7,� Harrisburg Senators� 2 ...�� (box)

The Pirates' only minor league affiliate still playing in the post-season, the Altoona Curve, defeated the Harrisburg Senators 7-2 in the third game of the Eastern League Western Division playoffs tonight in Harrisburg.� After splitting the first two games in Altoona, the Curve now have a 2-1 game lead in the best-of-5.

The Curve pitching was a big key in the game, as starter Justin Wilson dominated the Senators for 6 scoreless innings.� He allowed only two hits and struck out 7 Harrisburg batters, though he also walked 5.� The first two batters in the Harrisburg line-up, 2B Steve Lombardozzi and SS Josh Johnson, led off in four different innings, and each time at least one got on base.� Lombardozzi had both of the singles given up by Wilson.� In the bottom of the 1st, Lombardozzi led off with a single and Johnson walked.� Wilson got a line out and a strikeout, then walked another batter to load the bases, but then ended the inning with a fly out.

Wilson retired the side in order in the 2nd, then the same two came up again to begin the 3rd.� This time Lombardozzi grounded out, then Johnson walked again.� Wilson got a double play to erase Johnson at second base, ending the inning.� Another walk and another double play got Wilson through the 4th inning, and he retired the side in order in the 5th.� The 1-2 punch began the 6th inning with another single by Lombardozzi (only Wilson's second hit allowed) and a third walk to Johnson.� This time Lombardozzi advanced to third base by tagging up on a fly out, but two strikeouts ended the inning.

Mike Colla relieved Wilson to begin the 7th inning.� He worked around a single in that inning, then had to face guess who to lead off the 8th inning.� This time they turned it around -- Colla walked Lombardozzi and gave up a single to Johnson.� Colla wasn't any more impressed than Wilson had been.� He left them standing right there, with a strikeout and two short fly outs.

Meanwhile, the Curve batters were busy scoring.� They posted a total of 12 hits, with five different batters collecting 2 hits each:� 2B Chase d'Arnaud, 3B Josh Harrison, 1B Matt Hague, lF Jim Negrych, and RF Miles Durham. The Curve threatened in the 2nd, when Hague led off with a line drive single into right field.� He was erased with a double play, then C Hector Gimenez and Negrych worked back-to-back walks.� They were both left on base when a fly out ended the inning.� Three consecutive singles got another rally going in the 3rd inning.� D'Arnaud and Harrison both grounded through the left side of the infield, and SS Jordy Mercer lined the third single into right field.� That brought up Hague, who rocketed a long ball off the top of the wall in center field, not missing a home run by much.� It fell in for a double, clearing the bases to give Altoona a 3-0 lead.

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Eight Call-Ups Cap The Season

As expected, shortly after the Indianapolis Indians' season ended, the Pirates made the phone call to bring up seven players to the big league club.� Some of the call-ups were expected, but there were surprises too.

IMG_4652Pitchers Brad Lincoln and Justin Thomas, who are already on the Pirates' 40-man roster and have spent time with the Pirates already this season, were both recalled.� Catcher Jason Jaramillo and shortstop Pedro Ciriaco are also on the 40-man roster, and both were expected to be brought up.� Jaramillo spent the first half of the season with the Pirates, while Ciriaco came to the Pirates' organization in a trade from the Diamondbacks at the end of July.� It's the first trip to the majors for Ciricao.

The other four players were not on the 40-man roster and have to be added.� Outfielders Brandon Moss and Alex Presley (photo) did not expect the call up for just that reason -- they didn't think the Pirates would want to bother adding them to the roster and pay them to spend a lot of time on the bench.� But Presley was going to need to be added to the 40-man roster after the season in order to prevent him from being eligible to be taken in the Rule 5 Draft.� The Pirates' outfield is going to be crowded with outfielders looking for a chance to play and hit.� Pitchers Brian Bass and Steven Jackson have both pitched for the Pirates at some point this season, but were removed from the 40-man roster.� Now they are being addd back on, to help bolster the Pirates' bullpen.

In order to make room on the 40-man roster, the Pirates had to make other moves.� Pitcher Ross Ohlendorf and Jeff Clement were both moved to the 60-day disabled list.� Infielder Akinori Iwamura and catcher Erik Kratz were both removed from the 40-man roster and designated for assignment.� The Pirates had been trying to find a spot for Iwamura with another team, but have been unsuccessful.� Kratz was the feel-good story of the summer with his call-up during the All-Star game, but he lost out in the numbers game.

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Van Every Homers As Indians Lose Finale

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

The Indianapolis Indians wrapped up the 2010 season at Slugger Field in Louisville, Kentucky this afternoon with a loss to the Bats.� The Tribe finished the season just below .500 with a 71-73 record, and they finished the season series against Louisville with the Bats having a 12-10 game advantage.� The Bats' win, combined with Columbus' 5-2 loss to Toledo, gives the Bats the International League Western Division title.� The Clippers had been in first place in the Western Division for most of the season, but Louisville had a second-half surge and slipped up behind the Clippers for the win at the finish line.� The Clippers will be the Wild Card team in the International League Playoffs, which begin on Wednesday.

NOTES:

The Indians begin the 2011 season on Thursday April 7th, at home at Victory Field, against the Columbus Clippers.� That's just 7 months from tomorrow, and 213 days away.

Go Tribe!

(photos by Nancy)

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Powell Is Tough And Moss Adds RBI In Home Finale

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Last home game

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Indianapolis Indians� 4,� Louisville Bats� 1 ...���� (box)

IMG_4641Two RBI from the Indians' MVP and two hits from the team's Rookie of the Year supported a strong effort by the team's Starting Pitcher of the Year as the Tribe defeated the Louisville Bats at Victory Field in their home finale.� The Indians were again playing the role of spoiler, preventing the Bats from securing a playoff berth for at least one more day.

Starter Jeremy Powell (photo) pitched 6 solid innings, and allowed only one unearned run on 6 hits, but no walks, with 6 strikeouts.� Powell had trouble in two innings, one with trouble of his own making, and one with trouble that was foisted upon him.� After giving up a double off the top of the right field wall to Bats' lead-off batter CF Dave Sappelt, Powell retired the next three batters, including back-to-back strikeouts of RF Danny Dorn and 1B Todd Frazier, to get out of the inning.

The first bit of trouble came in the 2nd inning.� C Devin Mesoraco led off with a line drive into right field, going right toward RF Brandon Moss. But with a 6 pm start to the game, the sun was directly in Moss' eyes, and he had no idea where the ball was until it dropped to the ground about 15 feet in front of him and to his left for a single.� Powell got 3B Mike Costanzo to pop out to Pedro Ciriaco (photo below), then LF Michael Griffin singled into short center field.� 2B Kris Negron followed with another single, going over the left side of the infield into the outfield.� That brought up the Bats' pitcher Matt Klinker.� Powell got Klinker to tap back to the mound, where he snatched up the ball and returned it to the plate.� C Jason Jaramillo stepped on the plate to force out Mesoraco, then fired to first base for the double play on Klinker.

IMG_4663Powell allowed only one hit over the next three innings.� Dave Sappelt led off the 3rd with a single through the right side of the infield.� 2B Brian Friday took care of Sappelt when SS Zach Cozart lined sharply straight to Friday, who then took three steps forward and tagged out Sappelt, who was nearly at second base, for the unassisted double play.

Sappelt collected his third hit of the game when he led off the 6th inning with a single into center field.� Zach Cozart next bounced to third base, where 3B Akinori Iwamura made the scoop and turned to throw to second base to begin a double play.� He got the force out of Sappelt at second, but Brian Friday's throw on to first was rushed and it went to the outfield side of the bag.� 1B Mitch Jones couldn't make the catch, and Cozart was safe at first on a fielder's choice (no error because you can't assume a double play), with one out.� Danny Dorn was next, with a high pop at short.� This time, Pedro Ciriaco had to battle the wind, and instead of making the catch, a last-second gust pushed the ball away from him and it dropped to the ground.� That might not have been too much of a problem, since Ciriaco was able to quickly find the ball about 2 feet away and toss to second base to force out Cozart.� But Brian Friday could not keep hold of the toss, and when he tried to swipe at Cozart as he momentarily came off the bag, he missed that too.

That gave the Bats runners on first and second, with one out.� Todd Frazier gave the Indians another try at the double play that would end the inning with a grounder to third base.� Aki Iwamura again made the scoop and threw to second base to start a double play -- but this time, Iwamura's throw skittered into the outfield.� Frazier was safe at first on the fielder's choice, Dorn was safe at second on the throwing error, and Cozart raced around third base to score an unearned run.� Powell took a deep breath, bore down, and ended the mess by striking out both Devin Mesoraco and Mike Costanzo to end the inning.

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Indians Strike (Out) Bats

IMG_4577







Heroes at Victory Field




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Indianapolis Indians� 7,� Louisville Bats� 5 ...��� (box)

IMG_4571The Indianapolis Indians snapped a 4-game losing streak and got to play the role of spoiler for at least one night as they defeated the Louisville Bats at Victory Field tonight.� The Indians' pitchers combined for a total of 15 strikeouts -- more than half of the outs they recorded were strikeouts.

Dana Eveland (photo) made the start for the Indians and pitched 4 innings.� He struck out a season-high 9 batters, meaning that he recorded only 3 outs that were not strikeouts -- a fly out, a pop out, and a grounder force out at second base.� Eveland also gave up 4 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks.

The game began ominously for Eveland and the Tribe.� The first batter of the game, CF Dave Sappelt, lined a single over 2B Doug Bernier's leap and into right-center field.� The second batter, SS Zach Cozart, lined a double into right-center field.� The third batter, 1B Danny Dorn, smacked a home run over the right-center field wall, giving the Bats an instant 3-0 lead.

Eveland got his feet back under him for the rest of the 1st inning.� He struck out LF Todd Frazier and got C Devin Mesoraco to pop out to second base.� He did give up another hit, to LF Luis Terrero, butt hen struck out 2B Kris Negron to end the inning.

IMG_4573In the bottom of the inning, the Indians batters jumped right on Louisville starter Chad Reineke too.� LF Kevin Melillo with a liner over the head of the Bats' second baseman and into right-center field.� 3B Akinori Iwamura worked a walk, then CF Alex Presley flied out to right field. Melillo was able to tag up and advance to third base on the fly out, which put him in position for RF Brandon Moss. Moss collected his 90th RBI of the season with a grounder through the right side of the infield, and Melillo scored easily from third base.� That was all the Tribe could get that inning, though.� Jeff Clement, who was making a rehab start at first base (photo), flied out and C Erik Kratz struck out to end the inning.

Eveland struggled again in the 2nd inning.� The first batter, 3B Eric Eymann slipped a single through the hole at short for a single.� Bats' pitcher Chad Reineke dropped down a bunt, but Eveland pounced on it, whirled and fired to second base, where he was in time to force out Eymann and leave Reineke on first.� Back to the top of the Bats' order, Eveland struck out Dave Sappelt, then walked Zach Cozart.� Danny Dorn drove in another run (Reineke) with a single down the right field line.� Eveland struck out Todd Frazier again, but the Bats had increased their lead to 4-1.

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Indians’ Bats Quiet Again

IMG_4564

Jason Jaramillo and Brad Lincoln try to reassure umpire Chad Whitson.

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Columbus Clippers� 4,� Indianapolis Indians� 1 .....��� (box)

IMG_4546Pitchers Brad Lincoln (photo) and Joe Martinez piggy-backed through 7 innings at Victory Field tonight, but the Indianapolis Indians' batters could not provide them with much run support, and the Columbus Clippers took the win in the last meeting between the two teams for the 2010 season.

Like last night, the Indians cracked the scoreboard first.� RF Brandon Moss led off the 2nd inning with a smooth line drive into left field for a single.� DH Jeff Clement, with the Indians on a rehab assignment, took a 4-pitch walk, moving Moss to second base.� 1B Mitch Jones made the first out of the inning by swinging at an outside pitch for strike three.� C Jason Jaramillo brought in Moss from second with a line drive just over the leaping Clippers' 2B Cord Phelps, to give the Indians a 1-0 lead.� The inning ended with a strike out-throw out double play, when Clement took off for third base as SS Doug Bernier swung at strike three.

And like last night, the lead did not last long.

Brad Lincoln began the game by giving up a dribbly infield single along the third base line to RF Jose Constanza.� Lincoln got the next two batters to fly out, then picked Constanza off first base to end the inning.� He retired the Clippers in order in the 2nd inning, including two strikeouts.� The third inning began with a solo home run by LF Matt McBride, to tie the score at 1-1.

IMG_4563Next to the plate was former Indy Indian C Luke Carlin.� Carlin and Lincoln, former battery mates decided to have a little fun with one another.� On Lincoln's first pitch, a ball, Carlin feinted a bunt -- something he knows irritates Lincoln.� Lincoln responded by throwing the second pitch about 3 feet behind Carlin -- not close to him so that Carlin had any chance of jumping back and getting hit.� Both players grinned at one another, and prepared to get down to the real business at hand.� Unfortunately, the umpiring crew did not see the same humor in the exchange.� 2B Umpire Alan Porter walked in to the mound and motioned to home plate umpire Chad Whitson.� The two conferred and talked to Lincoln, who appeared to be reassuring them that he had no intention of hurting his former teammate.� But the umpires were still not impressed.� Whitson warned both dugouts and managers, as Carlin turned away with a grimace on his face (photo).� Jason Jaramillo and Brad Lincoln continued to try to reassure Whitson (photo at top), but they did not seem to be making any progress.

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Clippers Sail Past Indians

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Columbus Clippers� 5,� Indianapolis Indians� 2 ..�� (box)

IMG_3243The Columbus pitching staff held the Indianapolis Indians to just 4 hits at Victory Field tonight, while the Clippers' batters took advantage of timely hitting to slide past the Tribe.� The Clippers' win, combined with the Louisville Bats' 4-1 loss to the Toledo Mud Hens, means that the Clippers have regained first place in the International League Western Division by half a game.� It also means that Louisville is now on top of the Wild Card pile, with the Buffalo Bison and Syracuse Chiefs both tied at 4 games back.

RF Brandon Moss (photo) had two of the Indians four hits, a double and a single.� LF Kevin Melillo and 3B Akinori Iwamura each had a hit.� Three batters walked -- Iwamura, CF Alex Presley, and 1B John Bowker -- and that was all the base runners the Indians had.

The Indians threatened in the top of the 1st inning, when Presley walked with two outs, and Moss ripped a line drive down the right field line for a single, sending Presley to third base.� That inning ended when Bowker struck out.� The Tribe were first onto the scoreboard, with a rally in the 3rd inning.� Kevin Melillo got things stared with a grounder through the hole, just past the back-handed dive by Clippers' 1B Wes Hodges, for a one-out single.� Aki Iwamura worked a walk.� Alex Presley grounded to second base, and it looked like the Clippers were going to halt the rally with an inning-ending double play.� Iwamura was forced out at second base, but the speedy Presley beat out the relay throw back to first base.� That gave Brandon Moss a chance to come to the plate, and he took a fly ball past CF Ezequiel Carrera and into the deepest part of the stadium in the left-center alley.� The double drove in both Melillo and Presley, who was hustling all the way from first base, and the Indians had a 2-0 lead.

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Indians Are Mathematically Eliminated

IMG_4536







John Bowker homered in the 4th

Columbus Clippers� 6,� Indianapolis Indians� 4 ..�� (box)

The Indianapolis Indians could not keep up with the Columbus Clippers tonight at Victory Field, and the combination of the Indians' loss and the Clippers' win officially eliminated the Indians from any chance of making the International League playoffs as the wild card team.� The Louisville Bats lost to the Toledo Mud Hens, 6-2, so the Clippers have edged closer to the Bats, who are clinging to a half-game lead in the IL West Division.

IMG_4527The Indians and Clippers traded the lead back and forth in the middle innings of this game, but a 3-run 6th inning sealed the win for Columbus.� Jeremy Powell (photo) made his 20th start of the season for the Indians, and he suffered his 9th loss, allowing all 6 runs on 9 hits and a walk, with 3 strikeouts.� The Clippers got right down to business in the top of the 1st.� Lead-off batter RF Jose Constanza smacked Powell's first pitch on a line drive into center field, then hustled his way to second base before CF Alex Presley could get the ball back to the infield.� Powell got CF Ezequiel Carrera to ground out and got 2B Drew Sutton to pop out to 3B Akinori Iwamura in foul territory.� Then Powell got a 0-2 count on DH Wes Hodges, and was one strike away from escaping the inning unscathed -- until Hodges took the next pitch over the wall in dead center field, landing just behind the camera well for a 2-run homer.� 1B Jordan Brown followed the home run with a double to the warning track in right field.� Powell hit 3B Jared Goedert with a pitch, but both Brown and Goedert were left on base when LF Matt McBride flied out to left.

Not to be outdone, Aki Iwamura homered in the bottom of the 1st inning, taking the ball to almost exactly the same spot over the center field wall and behind the camera well -- no more than 5 feet away -- cutting the Clippers' lead to 2-1.� One out later, DH Brandon Moss was hit by a pitch from Columbus starter Yohan Pino.� Even though neither plunk appeared to be overtly intentional, home plate umpire Alan Porter must have decided he didn't want to have anyone even think about escalating anything, and so he stepped out and clearly warned Pino, Powell in the dugout, and both managers.� Moss ended the inning with a poor base running move -- he was caught out in the middle of nowhere on the base path, and easily caught stealing.

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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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