Morton Does Better, Earns 3rd Win

Morton pitched a 1-2-3 third inning, with a little complication.� With one out, CF Justin Maxwell swung at the first pitch, and he thought the ball had bounced off the plate and his foot.� The ball headed over toward third base, where Aki Iwamura scooped it up and threw to first base.� The umpires signalled Maxwell out, and Maxwell complained.� He complained a little too vigorously, though, and was ejected from the game by plate umpire Travis Brown.� Syracuse manager, another former Indy Indian, Trent Jewett, chatted with the umpires, but the ruling stood.

Morton gave up a lead-off single to 1B Jason Botts in the 4th, but got the next three batters out.� He retired the side in the 5th, and hit a batter in the 6th, but then erased that batter with a double play.� Morton began the double play on the mound, then threw to Argenis Diaz covering second base, who relayed on to Jonathan Van Every at first.

Luke Carlin added an insurance run in the 7th.� Alex Presley led off with a single, then stole second base (4th of the season).� LF Jim Negrych and Jonathan Van Every were both walked, loading the bases.� Carlin slipped a single through the right side of the infield.� That scored Presley easily, and Negrych also rounded third and headed for the plate.� The throw in from RF Davis was right on target to Carlos Maldonado though, and Maldonado planted himself in the baseline to block the plate.� Negrych did not even get into the neighborhood of the plate before he was tagged out.� Indians 7, Chiefs 2.

The Chiefs came back in the bottom of the 7th, and finished Charlie Morton’s evening.� With one out, Pete Orr singled.� Leonard Davis bounced to second base, and Orr was forced out, but Davis left on first.� Carlos Maldonado, who went 3-for-4 in the game, doubled into left field, moving Davis to third base.� Another double, by pinch-hitter Kevin Mensch, drove in both Davis and Maldonado, to bring the Chiefs closer, 7-4.� Morton walked Boomer Whiting, and that was all for him for the evening.� Morton had pitched 6.2 innings and allowed those 4 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks, with 5 strikeouts.� He threw103 pitches (63 strikes).

Corey Hamman, just back from Altoona, took over for Morton and finished the 7th inning by getting another former Indy Indian, Luis Ordaz, to ground out.� Hamman also pitched the 8th inning, and allowed a solo home run to SS Seth Bynum.

The Indians also scored a run in the 8th.� SS Doug Bernier, who had entered the game in the double switch when Hamman came in, doubled to begin the inning.� Brian Friday sacrifice bunted Bernier to third base, and Alex Presley brought him in to score when his third hit of the game fell in between the outfielders, who flinched at the last second to keep from colliding.

Daniel Moskos pitched the 9th inning for the Tribe, and he gave Tribe fans a few worrisome moments.� With one out, Carlos Maldonado singled, then Moskos walked both Kevin Mench and Boomer Whiting.� But Moskos bore down and struck out the next two batters to end the game.

Indians’ Hitting Gem of the Game:� Alex Presley’s 3 hits and 2 RBI, and Brandon Moss’s double and 3 RBI.� Two hot hitters, who are continuing to hit.� Presley is hitting .347, and Moss has increased his overall average to .266 by hitting .322 in the month of July and .351 in his past 10 games.

Indians’ Defensive Gem of the Game:� In the bottom of the 3rd, Boomer Whiting led off with a bunt that dribbled toward Aki Iwamura at third.� Iwamura charged in for the bare-handed scoop, then made a sidearm throw across the diamond.� It was a little off-target when it got to first.� Jonathan Van Every, playing first base for the second time in his pro career, made the stretch, leaning into foul territory, to get the catch and make the out.

NOTES:

With relievers Wil Ledezma and Steven Jackson up with the Pirates, and Justin Thomas having some leg pain, the Indians found themselves in need of bullpen help.� That’s why Corey Hamman was brought back up from AA Altoona.� And, the Pirates have signed righty pitcher Travis Chick.

Chick is a 26-year-old Texas native.� He was originally signed in 2002 by the Marlins in the 14th round of the draft.� The Marlins traded him to the Padres, who in turn traded him to the Reds, who then traded him to the Mariners.� Chick made his major league debut with the Mariners in 2006, when he pitched in just 3 games.� For the next two seasons, Chick pitched mostly at the AA level for the Mariners (West Tennessee), where he had a combined 10-11 record in 26 starts and 18 relief appearances.� He earned a 4.44 ERA in 184.1 innings, with 176 hits and 81 walks, with 150 strikeouts.� The righty made 3 appearances at AAA Tacoma in 2007 and 5 more starts in Tacoma in 2008.� Chick became a free agent after the 2008 season, and signed with the Dodgers for 2009.� He was assigned to AA Chattanooga, where he made 21 starts and 2 relief appearances, and earned a 8-7 record with a 4.22 ERA in 113 innings.� He gave up 110 hits and 46 walks, while striking out 98 batters.� Chick began the 2010 season playing for the Camden River Sharks in the Atlantic League (independent), but did only so-so.� He had a 5-4 record and 4.40 ERA with 62 hits in 59.1 innings, 33 walks and 47 strikeouts in 12 starts and 2 relief appearances for Camden.� Chick spent a couple of weeks on the disabled list (no reason specified) in May, and he was made “inactive” on July 16th.� The Pirates have signed Chick to a minor league contract and assigned him to Indianapolis.

Go Tribe!

(photos by Nancy)

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