Game Recap 8/29: Goedert, Clippers Find Bats
In the wake of their shutout loss Saturday and recent slide, the Clippers held a closed-door meeting before Sunday's ballgame against the Indianapolis Indians at Huntington Park. The meeting proved to be effective, as Columbus broke out offensively, to the tune of a 10-5 victory.
The Clippers took the lead in the second, thanks to an error, but starter Zach McAllister (9-11) struggled in the third inning, giving that lead back and then some. The big blow in a three-run frame was a two-run single from Alex Presley.
Columbus answered in the bottom of the third, however, with Drew Sutton's RBI-single bringing home Wes Hodges to cut the deficit to 3-2. The next inning, they tied the game when Ezequiel Carrera reached on a bunt single and then scored on Cord Phelps' double, all with two men out.
In the fifth, the Clippers took the lead back, when Luke Carlin's bouncer up the middle got past Indy shortstop Pedro Ciriaco and plated both Jordan Brown and Jared Goedert. The 5-3 lead was cut in half in the top of the sixth, but the offense blew the game open with a five-run seventh, which included Goedert's team-leading 19th home run and RBIs from Jose Constanza and Josh Rodriguez, along with a two-run triple from Carrera.
Indy scored a lone run in the eighth, to account for the final score. Mike Crotta took the loss for the visitors, to fall to 5-9.
The win allowed Columbus to keep pace with the Louisville Bats, who won earlier Sunday and still hold a one-and-a-half game lead in the International League West, with eight games remaining for both clubs. A loss by Buffalo in Scranton helped give Columbus a two-and-a-half game lead in the wild card race.
The Clippers and Indians head to Indy to resume their five-game set on Monday night, with Columbus sending righty Yohan Pino (9-8, 5.61) to the hill against Jeremy Powell (10-8, 4.61).
SeaWolves Avoid Sweep with 7-4 Win
Erie avoided a four-game sweep with a 7-4 defeat of Akron Sunday afternoon in front of 4,234 fans at the regular season finale at Canal Park. It was the SeaWolves first win in Akron this year and first in 20 attempts dating back to 2009. The Aeros drop to 69-65 while the SeaWolves improve to 60-74.
Erie broke out of its series-long slump in a big way with six runs in the second inning. The rally started when Billy Nowlin hit an RBI-double to score Rawley Bishop. Nowlin eventually came around to score on a throwing error by left-handed starter Scott Barnes. Brent Wyatt singled through the hole at shortstop to bring around Andy Bouchie and Matt Mansilla to make the score 4-0. Brandon Douglas added another pair of runs with a double to end the big inning. The SeaWolves scored again in the fourth when Wyatt advanced home on a sacrifice from Bryan Pounds.
The Aeros had a big inning of their own in the sixth as five straight hits led to four runs. Second baseman Jason Kipnis scored the first run on a double that brought in center fielder Jordan Henry. Third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall then singled to left to bring in Kipnis. After a pitching change, catcher Miguel Perez hit an RBI single to bring in Chisenhall. Right fielder Jerad Head scored the final run on a groundout by left fielder John Drennen.
Akron had a chance to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth, but could not take advantage and left two runners on base.
Barnes took the loss and fell to 6-10 on the season. He gave up seven runs on seven hits while striking out four against two walks in four innings of work. Erie southpaw starter Duane Below earned the win to improve to 5-12. Below gave up four runs on six hits with three strikeouts and one walk in 5.1 innings. Lester Oliveros came on in the ninth to record his 12th save.
The Aeros now travel to the Garden State for a four-game series against the Trenton Thunder. Akron will send Eric Berger (5-5, 4.68 ERA) to the hill to battle Adam Warren (4-2, 3.05 ERA).
Kinston Slaps Sox 15-2
Kinston exploded for 12 runs in a wild fifth inning on their way to a 15-2 blowout of Salem in the K-Tribe's home finale on Sunday at Historic Grainger Stadium. The Indians swept the three game series with Salem and now lead the Red Sox by three games in the Southern Division Wild Card. Kinston has now won a season high six games, while capturing 11 of their last 14 contests and four straight series.
The K-Tribe struck first on a two-run homer by Chun Chen in the bottom of the first inning. It was Chen's sixth of the season with Kinston, all of which have come at Grainger Stadium. He has hit three homers in the last week.
Salem scored an unearned run in the second against Indians starter Austin Adams. With two out, shortstop Ronald Rivas made a fielding error that allowed Jon Hee to reach base. After a walk to Drew Hedman, Ronald Bermudez hit a single to left to score Hee and cut the lead to 2-1. Kinston responded with a run in the bottom of the frame. Donnie Webb led off with a single and stole second. He came around to score on an RBI groundout by Justin Toole to make it 3-1. Toole has knocked in a run in three of his last four contests.
Kinston broke open the close contest in an epic fifth inning in which the K-Tribe scored 12 runs on eight hits and sent 15 batters to the plate. All of those numbers were the high marks for the K-Tribe in an inning this season. Everybody in the lineup reached base during the inning. Chen started the scoring with an RBI single and Kyle Bellows hit an RBI fielder's choice. Donnie Webb hit a two-run single and Ronald Rivas followed with a two-run double. Karexon Sanchez drew a bases loaded walk and Jeremie Tice hit into an RBI fielder's choice. The inning was capped by a three-run homer to left by Kyle Bellows to make it 15-1. Greenwell and Chen each had two hits in the inning. It was the biggest inning for Kinston since the K-Tribe scored 13 runs on 10 hits, sending 18 batters to the plate on June 19th, 2008 against Lynchburg. That game was also at Historic Grainger Stadium.
Salem scored a run in the eighth on an RBI groundout by Oscar Tejeda.
Adams (5-1) picked up the win for the K-Tribe, giving up just an unearned run on four hits in five innings. He walked one and struck out six. Clay (4-12) took the loss, allowing three runs on three hits in four innings.
The 15 runs for the K-Tribe matched their season high, set on April 25 against Myrtle Beach. Chen went 3-for-5 with two runs scored and three RBI. Bellows went 1-for-4 with two runs scored and four RBI.