Back-To-Back Homers Trip Up Tribe

IMG_4041The Indians also were putting runners on base, but were not getting them around to score.� The Tribe batters out-hit the Iron Pigs 10 – 7, but only 2 scored, and 7 were left on base (one was erased in a double play).� RF Brandon Moss singled twice and SS Argenis Diaz also had two hits, a single and a double.

2B Brian Friday (photo) celebrated his return to the Indians with a single up the middle in the 1st inning.� He was caught in no-man’s-land when pitcher JA Happ went to pick Friday off first, but Happ’s throw to first was a little high.� That made 1B Paul Hoover have to make a little jump to make the catch, as Friday had turned and headed for second base.� Because Hoover was off his balance, his throw to second was also off-balance, and as Friday slid in, the ball skipped off SS Bococks’ glove and into short left field, with Friday safe at second.� A pop out and a ground out left Friday right there at second, though.

1B Jeff Clement put the Indians on the scoreboard in the 4th, with a rising line drive that passed just barely inside the right field foul pole for a solo home run.� The Indians came within one run of the Iron Pigs, 3-2, with another run in the 5th.� C Jason Jaramillo led off with a line drive up the middle for a single.� Argenis Diaz struck out, then Kevin Melillo came on to pinch-hit for Daniel McCutchen.� Melillo singled into left-center field, as LF Domonic Brown made a dive for the ball but had it glance off the end of his glove and keep going.� The single moved Jaramillo to third base.

IMG_4039With 3B Brian Bixler (photo) at the plate, reliever Mike Stutes threw a wild pitch that appeared to glance off Bixler’s shoulder and zipped all the way to the backstop.� Jaramillo raced for the plate, as C Dane Sardinha chased after the ball.� Sardinha threw to Stutes, who was covering the plate, but Jaramillo slid in as Stutes dropped the ball.� Bixler had taken two steps toward first base, but he stopped and backed up when home plate umpire Chris Conroy did not make the “hit batter” call.� I thought the ball had hit Bixler, and the radio guys Howard Kellman and Scott McCauley thought so too.� As the dust was settling and Stutes and Sardinha were getting themselves reorganized, Bixler stepped away from the box and stood next to Brian Friday, and Bixler was pointing to his left shoulder and saying “it hit me”.� But, a run scored is better than another runner on base, and the Indians did not argue.

The Indians came close again in the 6th.� CF Alex Presley drove a single just inside the third base line and into left field.� After a fly out, Brandon Moss singled into left field, moving Presley to second, but it was too shallow for Presley to get further than second.� LF Jonathan Van Every grounded to second base, forcing Ozzie Chavez to make a diving stop, then hop up and straighten out before he could flip the ball to second.� Moss was forced out at second base, but the relay throw to first was not in time to get Van Every.� That gave the Indians runners on the corners, but Jaramillo flied out to end the inning and leave both runners on base.

After McCutchen’s departure, Jeremy Powell came on to pitch a quick scoreless 6th inning.� Powell came back out for the 7th, but this time he gave up a lead-off double to Dane Sardinha.� Powell got the next batter to fly out, but then made a wild pitch with former Indy Indian Chris Aguila, who was pinch-hitting, at the plate.� That moved Sardinha over to third base, which put him in position to score on Aguila’s sacrifice fly, giving the Iron Pigs an insurance run, 4-2.

Justin Thomas pitched the final two innings for the Tribe, and he kept the Iron Pigs from scoring again.� He worked around another lead-off double, this one by Ozzie Chavez in the 8th, and he hit RF John Mayberry with a pitch (on the shoe), but got out of the jam with a strikeout and a grounder to second.� Thomas struck out Dane Sardinha to open the 9th, then gave up a grounder to Brian Bocock that slipped through between Argenis Diaz and Brian Friday.� Iron Pigs’ reliever Scott Mathieson hit for himself, as the Iron Pigs wanted him to pitch the bottom of the 9th, and Thomas struck out Mathieson.� That brought up Chris Duffy.� After one pitch to Duffy, Bocock took off for second base.� Jason Jaramillo’s throw was right on target, and Diaz, covering the base, was able to tag out Bocock to end the inning.

The Indians could not get much going in their final chances to catch up to the Iron Pigs.� Pinch-hitter Jim Negrych doubled down the left field line and into the corner with one out in the 7th inning, but he was left standing on second when the inning ended.� Argenis Diaz singled with two outs in the 9th, but was left there when pinch-hitter Aki Iwamura struck out to end the game.

Photos:� The Brians, Bixler (left) and Friday (right)

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Indians’ Hitting Gem of the Game: Jeff Clement’s solo home run in the 4th inning, which put the Indians onto the scoreboard.� Pinch-hitter Kevin Melillo had the most clutch hit of the game, when he came to the plate in the 5th inning with one out and a runner (Jason Jaramillo) on first.� Melillo singled into left-center field, moving Jaramillo into scoring position.

Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game:� Jason Jaramillo throwing out Brian Bocock trying to steal second base in the top of the 9th.� It ended the inning, and kept the Indians from getting any further behind.

NOTES:

Brian Friday last played for the Indians on June 9th.� That was when he was taken out as he was turning a double play at second base, and sustained a severe ankle sprain.� He has been rehabbing with the GCL Pirates and the Bradenton Marauders and is now back on the Indians’ roster.� In order to make room for him on the active roster, infielder Brian Myrow was placed on the Disabled List.

Alex Presley extended his hitting streak to 12 games, and Brandon Moss extended his to 11 games.

Go Tribe!

(photos by Nancy)

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