Game Information: Indianapolis Indians (60-64) vs. Lehigh Valley IronPigs (60-63)
LOCATION: Victory Field
FIRST PITCH: 1:35 p.m. ET
GAMES #125 / HOME #63: Indianapolis Indians (60-64) vs. Lehigh Valley IronPigs (60-63)
PROBABLES: RHP James Marvel (4-0, 1.82) vs. LHP Damon Jones (0-1, 8.69)
RADIO: FoxSportsIndy.com / Fox Sports 1260 / iHeart app
TV: MiLB TV / Comcast 90
LAST NIGHT: The Indians never led in a 3-2 loss to the IronPigs on Saturday night, their fourth straight defeat to fall a season-low four games under .500. Lehigh Valley scored two runs in the second off Yefry Ramirez, both coming on a two-out single by former Indian Phil Gosselin. Jose Pirela and Malquin Canelo scored on the base hit to left. Indy plated its first run in the fourth after Francisco Cervelli was hit by pitch to start the frame. He took second on a groundout and third on a Trayvon Robinson single before scoring on a groundout by Jake Elmore. The score remained 2-1 until the ninth. The visitors added a crucial insurance run off Sean Keselica when Gosselin drew a bases-loaded walk, but Cervelli parked a solo shot to open the bottom half to bring Indy back within one. Elmore lined a two-out single ahead of a Darnell Sweeney strikeout that ended the game.
EL VARON: Yefry Ramirez tied a season high with nine strikeouts over six innings of two-run ball last night for his first quality start of the season (nine starts). He also struck out nine in his last appearance with Triple-A Norfolk on April 25 at Columbus (4.0ip, 5h, 4r, 3er, 3bb, 9k). Ramirez has pitched in 23 games this season for four different teams (Norfolk, Baltimore, Indy, Pittsburgh) and his teams have gone just 5-18 in those affairs.
ELMO: Jake Elmore has reached base safely in 16 of his last 18 games overall, is hitting a league-best .345 (107-for-310) and ranks third in OBP (.410). Indy's last batting champion was Junior Noboa (.340) in 1989 and they have had just four batting titles since 1969 (also: Bernie Carbo in 1969, Gene Locklear in 1972, Dallas Williams in 1987). Elmore's .345 average for the season would be the highest single-season qualifying average by an Indy player since Williams hit .357 in 1987.
T-ROB: In 15 games since July 25, Robinson is hitting .360 (18-for-50) with three homers, two doubles, 10 RBI and four runs scored. The 31-year-old's average rests at .318 and has been above .300 for all but a six-day stretch (April 5-10). He has hit safely in seven straight and nine of his last 10 overall.
J-MART: Over Jason Martin's last 19 games (hit safely in 15 of them), the Tribe outfielder has hit .324 (23-for-71) with one triple, six doubles, 10 RBI and six runs scored. He is batting .298 (42-for-141) with three homers, one triple, nine doubles and 21 RBI in 39 games since the beginning of July.
WOODY: UTIL Eric Wood ripped his 36th career home run with the Tribe Tuesday night (16 in 2017, 11 in 2018, 9 in 2019), tied for fourth most by an Indy player in the Victory Field era (1996-present). Wood is tied with Neil Walker (2007-10, 2013) for fourth and trails Steve Pearce (37, 2007-11), Matt Hague (38, 2011-14) and Guillermo Garcia (39, 1996-99) on the leaderboard.
RECORDS IN JEOPARDY: Indy's pitching staff has piled up 1,106 strikeouts through 124 games (8.92 K/game), 47 strikeouts shy of tying the franchise record 1,153 set in 2013 (records for this stat go back to 1902 when the franchise was founded). The Tribe are on pace to record 1,249 punchouts this season. The Indians are also on pace to surrender a franchise record 155 home runs, which would break the current record of 145 HR allowed in 2005.
PLAYOFF SITUATION: The Indians saw their elimination number shrink to seven with last night's loss. Indy is in danger of missing the postseason for a second straight campaign, which would be the first time that's happened since a five-year drought from 2007-11. From 2012-17, the Indians reached the Governors' Cup playoffs four times.
HOME WOES: The Indians are 28-33 at home this year and are in danger of having a sub-.500 record for the first time since 2002 (35-38) and 2003 (35-37). Indy began the season 6-1 at home and were seven games over .500 at home on May 31 (17-10), but they've gone 11-22 in their last 33 home games. With nine home games remaining, the Tribe would need to go 7-2 to reach a .500 home record.
IT'S AN IL WEST THING: Indy isn't alone in the IL West when it comes to having a losing record at home. Division-leading Columbus is 30-33 at Huntington Park, Toledo is 28-34 at Fifth Third Field and Louisville is 26-36 at Louisville Slugger Field. Only Pawtucket (22-38) and Norfolk (28-33), both in last place in their respective divisions, have losing home records outside of the quartet of IL West teams.
THEY THE NORTH: The Tribe are 15-21 against IL North opponents this year -- including a 6-12 mark at Victory Field -- with only today's game remaining. Since becoming Pittsburgh's Triple-A affiliate in 2005, the Tribe have finished over .500 against the IL North 11 times (2005-07, 2009-13, 2015, 2017-18), right at .500 once (2014) and under .500 three times now, with the 2019 campaign joining 2008 and 2016.
GRAB THE LEAD: Indy is a league-best 42-15 (.737) when scoring first and has scored first in 20 of 36 games since the break, compiling a 14-6 record.
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