The Bison came right back to score another 2 runs in the bottom of the 4th, on a double by Figueroa and a 2-run homer by Duda. Gallagher also gave up a single in the 5th, and another walk to Figueroa in the 6th. He finished his day’s work having allowed 9 runs (8 earned) on 9 hits and 3 walks over 6 innings. He had thrown 94 pitches (62 strikes).
The Indians managed only one hit over the 5th and 6th innings, a single by d’Arnaud into right field, but he was erased in a double play. The Tribe went down in order in the 6th, then threatened again in the 7th. C Eric Fryer walked and CF Gorkys Hernandez singled with one out. They both moved into scoring position when pinch-hitter Andy Marte grounded out to second, but a fly out ended the inning.
The Tribe scored their only other run in the top of the 8th. Presley started the rally with a single up the middle. Bowker walked, and Hague singled to again load the bases. Durham drove in the Indians’ second run with a second sacrifice fly, as Presley came in to score.
Dan Meyer (photo) relieved Gallagher to begin the bottom of the 7th inning, and at the same time, then newest Indian, C Kris Watts, came into the game in place of Fryer. Meyer was having trouble with command and control from the beginning. He walked Pascucci and Feliciano on 9 pitches. The first pitch he threw to Hernandez was way wild, and well over Watts’ head. By the time Watts got to the ball, the runners had both advanced into scoring position. Meyer bore down, striking out Hernandez, then getting a fly out and another strikeout to escape the jam. He was still wild, though, and after a pitch sailed behind Raul Chavez, the home plate umpire Jeff Gosney warned Meyer and both benches, maybe thinking that Meyer was trying to retaliate for the Bison’s big lead.
But Meyer was not as lucky in the 8th, when he again had trouble finding the strike zone. With the game already out of hand, and the bullpen having been overworked lately, infielder Shelby Ford headed down to the bullpen and started warming up to pitch. Meyer walked the first three batters, Figueroa, Fisher, and Duda, and again had pitches sailing to the backstop. Martinez brought in Figueroa with a sacrifice fly, and another walk to Pascucci loaded the bases again. Meyer then hit Feliciano with a pitch, forcing in the second run of the inning. Home plate ump Gosney jumped out from behind the plate and ejected Meyer, who was about to be pulled out of the game anyway. Meyer and manager Dean Treanor both argued, saying that Meyer clearly was having a control problem and was clearly not trying to hit anyone. But Gosney would have none of it, and both Meyer and Treanor headed for the clubhouse. That brought in Shelby Ford, for his first professional time on the mound. Nor does he have a future as a pitcher. The first batter Ford faced, Hernandez, blasted a grand slam over the right field wall, for a 15-2 lead. Ford got a fly out, then gave up a single and a wild pitch, then got a fly out to end the inning.
Gorkys Hernandez doubled to begin the top of the 9th, but he got no further, as the next three batters went down in order.
The Tribe and the Bison have one more game on Friday, then the Indians return to Indianapolis for a 4-game series against Gwinnett.
Indians’ Hitting Gems of the Game: Two clutch sacrifice flies by Miles Durham, which brought in both of the Indians’ runs.
Shelby Ford injured his right ankle as he came out of the batters’ box in the 6th inning of yesterday’s game. It was called a “tweak”, and wasn’t thought to be serious — it was ok for him while he was pitching today.
Pirates’ catcher Chris Snyder is having back problems again and is going to have surgery, so Dusty Brown is getting a lot of playing time — but he’s going to need back-up. The Pirates have added Wyatt Toregas to their 40-man roster and the active roster, so he can back up Brown. (Matt Diaz is their emergency back-up catcher.) Kris Watts was been called up from Altoona this morning to back up Eric Fryer, who was himself promoted just about 10 days ago.
The Indianapolis Star’s Ben Jones has an article about Alex Presley in this morning’s edition. Consistency is the name of Presley’s game.
Don’t forget to vote for the Indians for the International League All-Star game. You can vote up to 25 times. Fan votes count for a third of the total vote. VOTE HERE
(photos by Nancy)