Clippers Jump Tribe Early, Level Four-Game Series
COLUMBUS, OHIO - The Clippers plated four runs in the first inning and topped that number with five runs in the second as the Indians were dealt a 9-1 defeat on Friday night. Columbus sent 19 batters to the dish in the first two innings combined.
After leaving 10 runners on base and finishing 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position in the series opener, Columbus (56-34) wasted no time jumping on Tribe starter Eduardo Vera. During the four-run first, five consecutive Clippers reached base safely. Yu Chang doubled and Ryan Flaherty walked ahead of a Brandon Barnes soft liner into shallow right that made it 1-0. Ka'ai Tom chipped in a two-run double, and Mark Mathias added a run-scoring groundout.
The outing worsened for Vera in the second. Max Moroff started the frame with a two-bagger, and Daniel Johnson got on base with a trickling grounder that rode the third base line chalk. Flaherty, Tom and Mathias sandwiched RBI singles around an Eric Haase two-run double to complete the five-run burst.
Making his team-high 18th start of the season, the 25-year-old Vera (L, 5-7) was tagged for a career-high nine earned runs on nine hits in 1.2 innings pitched. The outing was the second-shortest start of his career.
Michael Peoples (W, 6-3) benefited from the early run support and sailed through six innings of one-run ball to improve to 3-0 in six career games (five starts) against Indy. He yielded five hits, walked two and struck out seven.
Indianapolis (45-45) scored its only run in the fifth inning. Jake Elmore laced his 19th double and later touched home on a Cole Tucker groundout.
Gregory Polanco doubled for Indy in the first inning and finished 1-for-3 with a walk. Ke'Bryan Hayes and Pablo Reyes each went 2-for-4 with a pair of singles.
The Tribe relief quartet of Yefry Ramirez, Geoff Hartlieb, Tyler Lyons and JB Shuck combined for 6.1 scoreless innings and 13 strikeouts.
Columbus went 8-for-18 with RISP and tallied 15 hits - six for extra bases - in its league-high 56th win.
The two IL West foes play the third game of their series on Saturday at 7:15 p.m. ET. James Marvel (1-0, 0.00) will make his second career Triple-A start against Shao-Ching Chiang (6-5, 4.87).
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