Tribe Relievers Disintigrate

With the score tied at 1-1 going into the 4th inning, Brad Lincoln got into more trouble by giving up two triples. �With one out, DH Max Leon sent a ball down the right field line and into the corner for a triple. �Rabelo tried to sneak a grounder through the right side of the infield, but Neil Walker, at second base again tonight, dove to his left and came up with the ball, then threw from his knees looked Leon back to third, and threw to Pearce at first for the second out of the inning. �The next batter, 3B Danny Worth, lined a single into right field, easily scoring Leon from third. �Will Rhymes followed with a fly to right field that sailed will over RF Brandon Jones’ head and all the way to the right field wall. �Rhymes was into second with a double, and Worth raced around and headed for the plate, as the ball was coming in to Luke Carlin. �Carlin caught the ball at the plate, but with his body turned away from Worth coming at him down the third base line. �Worth lowered his shoulder and plowed into Carlin (a clean play), bowling over Carlin and sending the ball flying out of his mitt. �Luckily for the Indians, the ball did not go far, and Lincoln was right there backing up Carlin. �He picked up the ball and did not let Rhymes get any further than third base, where he’d gone on the throw. �Both Carlin and Worth hopped right up and were both ok, but the run had scored, to give the Mud Hens a 3-1 lead.

IMG_2508Lincoln went on to pitch two more innings, retiring those six batters in order. �He finished with 83 pitches, 48 for strikes, and had allowed 3 runs on 5 hits and 2 walks, with 3 strikeouts. �Vinnie Chulk (photo) came on to begin the 7th inning, and he also retired the side in order, which took him only 8 pitches.

Then, in the 8th inning, the wheels fell off.

Chulk opened the 8th by giving up a solo home run to RF Brennan Boesch. �He followed that by giving up three straight singles, to Larish, Wells, and LF Jeff Frazier, to load the bases with no outs. �He worked the count full on Max Leon, then walked him to force in a run. �That was all for Chulk, though he was still responsible for the runners on base.

Anthony Claggett (photo below) relieved Chulk, but he didn’t stop the bleeding. �Claggett gave up a single to Rabelo — a grounder that just slipped past Neil Walker’s dive and into right field, scoring Wells. �A four-pitch walk to Worth forced in Frazier, still with no outs. �Claggett struck out Will Rhymes on three pitches, which only earned him sarcastic cheers from the thin Indianapolis crowd. �Brent Dlugach singled up the middle, scoring two more runs (Leon and Rabelo). �Finally, Claggett got Boesch to ground right to Neil Walker, who started a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning. �Toledo 9, �Indians 1.

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And the Mud Hens were still not done. �Claggett was clearly the sacrificial lamb at this point in the game, since no one in the bullpen or the dugout moved when he got into trouble again in the 9th. �He began the 9th by giving upt three straight hits — a double down the right field line and into the Toledo bullpen, just barely fair, by Larish; a double down the left field line and into the corner, also just barely fair, by Wells, scoring Larish; and a single lined into left field by Frazier, which moved Wells to third base. �A short fly ball was the first out, but it was not deep enough to let Wells tag up and score. �The inning ended when Rabelo tapped back to the mound, and Claggett was able to start a double play, 1-4-3. �Even so, that double play was almost a disaster. �Both SS Brian Friday and Neil Walker converged at second base, and both of them stuck out their gloves to catch the ball tossed from Claggett. �Luckily for the Tribe, Friday must have pulled his glove back a little at the last second, because the ball did not bounce off the gloves and into center field, and Walker fired over to first base to get the last out.

After the Tribe batters got their one run in the 2nd inning, they did not have much luck for the rest of the game. �CF Jose Tabata extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a single up the middle in the 3rd, and he stole second base, but was left stranded. �Moss was hit by a pitch in the 4th, but got no further than first base.

Reliever Scot Drucker pitched the final four innings. �He gave up a hit to Pedro Alvarez in the 6th. �Alvarez stole second base, and tried for home when Jonathan Van Every singled into right field. �But the throw in from the outfield was in the perfect position, just a step up the third base line. �Alvarez did not even try to score, as he was tagged out well in front of the plate. �Drucker finished by retiring the final 9 Indians’ batters in order.

The loss gives the Indians a 1-5 record in the season series against the Mud Hens, and a 1-3 record at home. �The Columbus Clippers come to town tomorrow, for a brief two-game series.

Indians’ Hitting Gem of the Game: �Luke Carlin’s RBI single into right field in the 2nd inning, which brought in the Tribe’s only run of the game.

Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game: �Carlin’s throw to second base in the 3rd inning, to throw out Jeff Larish as he tried to steal second base. �It was the turning point of the inning, and put Brad Lincoln into position to get the third out and get out of the inning.

NOTES:

Argenis Diaz was scheduled to be in the line-up, but was a last-minute (literally) scratch. �He did not appear to be injured as he sat on the bench, and later in the game did some coaching at first base.

Hayden Penn reported to the Indians today, and was supposedly there tonight — but everyone who was not playing was bundled up, and I couldn’t pick him out among the others.

Memo to Scott McC: �I keep score in ink (black gel ink). �I found that pencil got too smeary and faded. �But, I have a secret weapon — the wite-out pen. �Today, though, I thought something was up when I saw Neil Walker out warming up with the other starters just before the game. �I waited to fill in my scorebook, so I didn’t have to use the secret weapon.

Go Tribe!

(photos by Nancy)

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