Game Information: Indianapolis Indians (70-64) vs. Toledo Mud Hens (69-64)
With just six games remaining in the regular season, the Indians hold a half-game lead over the Mud Hens in the IL Wild Card race.
Location: Victory Field
First Pitch: 1:35 p.m. EDT
Game #135 / Home #67: Indianapolis Indians (70-64) vs. Toledo Mud Hens (69-64)
Probables: RHP Tyler Eppler (12-6, 3.70) vs. RHP Warwick Saupold (3-0, 4.15)
Radio: FoxSports975.com / iHeart app
TV: MiLB TV / Comcast 90
ABOUT LAST NIGHT: The Mud Hens used a Jason Krizan RBI double in the eighth inning to take a 3-2 lead, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia added an RBI single off A.J. Schugel for insurance as Toledo dropped Indy last night, 4-2. Wyatt Mathisen drove in both of Indy's runs, doubling home Jacob Stallings in the second to give the Indians a 1-0 lead and later tying the game at 2-2 in the fourth with a deep sacrifice fly to right. Toledo had grabbed a 2-1 advantage in the fourth thanks to two unearned runs. J.T. Brubaker was brilliant once again for the Tribe, tossing 6.0 frames and surrendering just the two unearned runs on six hits and two walks with four punchouts. Damien Magnifico (L, 3-3) was charged with two earned runs in 1.1 innings pitched to take the loss. Zac Reininger (W, 5-1) recorded four outs in relief, and Zac Houston (S, 8) struck out two in a perfect ninth. Stallings had three hits to pace the offense, and Kevin Kramer chipped in another two-hit effort, his fifth in the last six games.
GO GET NO. 13: Tyler Eppler takes the hill today seeking win No. 13 on the season. He is trying to become the first Indians pitcher to have 13 wins in a season since Rick van den Hurk had 13 in 2012. The 25-year-old was in line for his 13th win last Friday in Louisville, but the Tribe bullpen combo of Jesus Liranzo and Damien Magnifico gave up four runs in the bottom of the ninth to squander a 4-1 lead en route to a devastating 5-4 setback.
DAY AND NIGHT: Eppler has been a solid day game starter for Indy over the last two seasons. His daytime ERA is a full run lower than his ERA in games played at night. His day/night splits since the start of 2017 with Indy are below:
Day Games: 19 appearances (18 starts), 8-4, 3.65 ERA (42 ER/103.2 IP), .253 average against (99-for-392), 13 HR (1.13 HR/9.0 IP)
Night Games: 34 appearances (26 starts), 12-11, 4.66 ERA (90 ER/173.2 IP), .301 average against (209-for-695), 22 HR (1.14 HR/9.0 IP)
LUPLOW ON FIRE: Jordan Luplow has hit safely in 12 straight games for the Tribe dating back to June 29, batting .405 (17-for-42) with one homer, one double, seven RBI, seven runs scored and four walks. He needs a hit today to match his career-high streak of 13 games set from Aug. 2-15, 2015 with Single-A West Virginia. Since June 3 with Indy, he's hit .354 (45-for-127) in 35 games to raise his average from .250 to .295. He has hit safely in 31 of those 35 games.
RIGHT MAN, RIGHT TIME: Jose Osuna is batting .419 (36-for-86) with six homers, nine doubles and 52 RBI with RISP this season. He has also walked 12 times and struck out just 10 times in those situations for the Tribe this year. The last Indians player to total 25-plus plate appearances with RISP and post an average at or above .400 was Gregory Polanco in 2014, when he hit .432 (32-for-74) with 43 RBI. Matt Hague nearly accomplished the feat that season, as well, batting .396 (38-for-96) with 53 RBI.
INHERITED RUNNERS SCORING: In the month of August, Indians relievers have inherited 30 runners and 15 have scored (50%). From April-July, 36 of 101 total inherited runners (35.6%) scored on Tribe relievers.
AUGUST HEAT: Four Indians are batting over .300 in August, led by Kevin Kramer who is batting .337 (30-for-89) with two home runs, six doubles and five RBI this month. Ryan Lavarnway has a .333 average (23-for-69), one homer, nine doubles and 10 RBI in 20 games. Jose Osuna has the third-highest average this month (.329, 22-for-67) in 18 contests, including two dingers, three doubles and a team-high 18 RBI. Eric Wood has also had a productive final month, batting .317 (19-for-60) with four long balls, four doubles and 10 RBI in 18 games.
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