Indians Snatch Defeat From The Jaws Of Victory

IMG_4012Getting some run support and the lead seemed to energize Dana Eveland.� He retired the Iron Pigs in order in the 2nd inning, and got his teammates back to the plate — where they added to the lead.� Eveland (photo) grounded out to begin the inning, and Kevin Melillo also bounced out to first base, then the Indians staged a 2-out rally.� Aki Iwamura chopped a signle into left field.� With Iwamura off and running with the pitch, Alex Presley drove a single to deep center field, as Iwamura slid into third base.� Jeff Clement slipped a grounder just inside the first base line and into right field for a 2-RBI single, as both Iwamura and Presley scored.� Then Brandon Moss blasted a 2-run homer� past Domonic Brown’s leap, over the right field wall at the 362-foot sign, and right to a much shorter fielder in a red t-shirt.� A strikeout ended that inning too, but the Indians had increased their lead to 8-1.� That inning took 26 pitches for Bump, and it was the end of his evening.

Dana Eveland kept going, though.� He also breezed through the 3rd inning, and would have retired the side in order but for wet grass.� (It was raining up until about 25 minutes before the game started.)� With two outs, Ozzie Chavez grounded right back to the mound, where Eveland knocked the ball down.� He took the three steps onto the grass right in front of the mound, to pick up the ball and make the throw to first, but just as he reached for the ball, Eveland’s left foot slipped out from under him, and he couldn’t make the throw.� It didn’t rattle him, though, as he got the next batter, Brown, to fly out and end the inning.

IMG_4024Eveland started looking tired as he began the 4th inning.� John Mayberry grounded to deep at short, and while Argenis Diaz made the play, his throw to first base was way high, making Jeff Clement leap to keep the ball from sailing into the visitors’ dugout.� Mayberry was credited with a hit.� He advanced to second base on a wild pitch, and held there when Neil Sellers grounded out to third base, where Brian Bixler (photo) had taken over for Aki Iwamura.� 1B Paul Hoover drove a double to the base of the right field wall, scoring Mayberry from second base.� C Dane Sardinha followed with a line drive into center field, plating Hoover, and that was all for Eveland.� Eveland had thrown 62 pitches, a little short of his max, with 36 strikes.� He had allowed those 3 runs on 6 hits, with a walk and 2 strikeouts.� Brian Bass came on to finish the inning for Eveland, which he did with two strikeouts.

The Indians still had an 8-3 lead.� It would have been nice to add to the lead, but the Indians were not able to do that.� Iron Pigs’ reliever Joe Savery took the mound in relief of Bump, and while he had at least one Indians’ base runner on base in each of his four innings, he did not let any of them come around to score.� Argenis Diaz singled and Kevin Melillo walked in the 3rd, Jim Negrych doubled in the 5th, and Alex Presley singled in both the 4th and the 6th.� All were left on base, except for Presley, who was erased in a double play in the 4th.


The closest the Indians came to scoring again was in the 7th inning, with Mike Zagurski on the mound for Lehigh Valley.� Zagurski walked Brandon Moss on 4 pitches, then walked Jim Negrych on 5 pitches.� Jason Jaramillo (photo) singled on a soft fly that fell in, in front of Brown.� Moss reached third base, and was waved around.� Brown came up with the ball, spun, and made a perfect throw to the plate as Moss came racing in.� C Dane Sardinha took the throw as he blocked the plate, and he easily tagged out Moss as Moss tried to slide around Sardinha.� The rally was further squelched when Diaz bounced to third base, which turned into a 5-4-3 double play.

After finishing the 4th inning, Brian Bass went on to pitch the 5th and 6th innings.� He gave up a single in each inning, but erased Chris Aguila with a double play in the 5th, and forced out Hoover at second base in the 6th.



Photo:� Jim Negrych, Brian Bixler, Jeff Clement

The Indians still had an 8-3 lead going into the top of the 7th — and that’s when the trouble began.� Bass came back out to begin the 7th, even though he’d already pitched 2.2 innings and thrown 39 pitches.� It showed — the first three Iron Pigs’ batters reached base.� SS Brian Bocock lined a single into center field.� Former Indy Indian (2005, 06, 08) Chris Duffy pinch-hit, and he rocketed a liner into left field.� Kevin Melillo ranged to his right and made a desperate dive, though he was not even close, and the ball got past him, going all the way to the wall.� By the time Melillo chased down the ball, Bocock had scored and Duffy was into third with a triple.� Chris Aguila singled, scoring Duffy.� Bass struck out Chavez, and by then, Daniel Moskos had finished warming up in the bullpen.� Moskos came into the game, but he also had the first three batters he faced reach base safely.� Brown singled, moving Aguila to second base.� Mayberry singled, driving in Aguila, and advancing Brown to third base.� Sellers also singled, plating Brown.� Paul Hoover dropped a bloopey ball into short right field, and it would have been a single, but RF Brandon Moss was able to quickly scoop up the ball and fire it to second base, where he was able to force out Sellers, who had had to hold up near first base in case Moss had made the catch in the air.� A fly out ended the inning, but the Iron Pigs had come within one run of the Tribe, 8-7.

IMG_4008Wil Ledezma pitched a scoreless 8th inning for the Indians.� He gave up a walk to pinch-hitter Keoni De Renne, but got two strikeouts.� The Indians collected two more singles in the bottom of the inning — one by Kevin Melillo, and Alex Presley’s 5th hit of the game, but again, both were left stranded on base.

The 9th began with the Indians still clinging to a one-run lead.� Jean Machi came in from the bullpen to take over from Ledezma, and he began the inning by giving up a single to Domonic Brown and a double to John Mayberry.� With two runners in scoring position, Machi got Neil Sellers to ground to third base.� Brian Bixler made the scoop, glared Brown back to third base, and fired to first for the first out of the inning.� Paul Hoover was intentionally walked, to load the bases and bring up the light-hitting Dane Sardinha, with the hopes of inducing a double play.� Machi struck out Sardinha, which brought up Brian Bocock, another light hitter, who had entered the game with a .196 batting average.� But anyone with a bat is dangerous, and Bocock proved that theory, when he cleared the bases with a line drive into right-center field, between Alex Presley and Kevin Melillo.� They chased the ball all the way to the wall, as Bocock reached third base, having given the Iron Pigs a 10-8 lead.� A strikeout ended the inning, but by then it was too late.

The Indians went down in order in the 9th (the only inning in the game in which they were retired in order), as the wind had been taken out of their sails.� Jean Machi was charged with his 4th Blown Save and his 3rd Loss.


Left:� Brian Bixler in the dugout;��� Right:� Jason Jaramillo behind the plate



Left:� Former Indian Chris Aguila;���� Right:� Brian Bass gets a turn to hit




IMG_4014Indians’ Hitting Gems of the Game:� Alex Presley went 5-for-5 for the second time since joining the Indians, with four singles and a double.� He is now hitting at a .356 clip.� Since the All-Star break, Presley is 12-for-21 (.571).

Oh, and Brandon Moss (photo) hit his 13th homer, and Jeff Clement picked up 4 RBI (25 total).

Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game:� The 6-4-3 (Argenis Diaz to Jim Negrych to Jeff Clement) double play that ended the top of the 1st inning and got Dana Eveland out of a jam without allowing any further runs to score.

Go Tribe!




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