Long Ball Lifts Tribe to Sweep
LOUISVILLE, K.Y. - Despite being outhit for the third straight night, the Indians offense knocked three out of the park to topple the Bats in a series sweep, 8-7.
Louisville (18-28) had its chances in late innings to tie the game, but Brandon Waddell slammed the door with the bases loaded in the sixth inning to quiet the rally. In the ninth, Jake Brentz sealed his fourth Triple-A save on a double play with the winning run on base.
The Tribe (25-18) offense wasted no time getting started in the first inning. Jason Martin hopped on the second pitch of the game and sent a double out to right field. Two batters later, Jose Osuna drove him in on a productive groundout. The Tribe defense took a little longer to warm up, committing two errors as the Bats went ahead, 2-1.
Louisville's lead didn't last long. A leadoff walk by Nick Franklin, his first of three on the night, set up a sacrifice bunt situation for Eduardo Vera. With one out in the top of the third, Martin brought Franklin in with his second hit of the night, a single to center. Martin's time on the bases didn't last long as Ke'Bryan Hayes sent a fly ball to straightaway center to give the Tribe a 4-2 lead. Indy's lead was extended on Will Craig's 12th long ball of the season, 5-2.
In the bottom of the third, three straight hits - a single, a double, and a two-run home run by Bryan O'Grady - quickly evened up the game at 5-5. The scoring came to a standstill until the sixth inning when Kevin Kramer hit his fourth home run over the center field wall to bring around Craig's leadoff walk. With the bases loaded and two outs, Hayes received the third walk of the inning to extend the Tribe lead, 8-5. The Bats tacked on one run on three hits in the sixth inning and another in the eighth, but the Tribe bullpen held its lead through the ninth.
Vera (W, 3-3) went 5.0 innings and allowed five of the Bats' seven runs on six hits. Lopez (L, 2-3) gave up all eight Tribe runs on six hits and surrendered three free bases on walks.
The Indians travel to Columbus (26-18) for a four-game slate beginning tomorrow at 7:15 p.m. ET. Indianapolis sits half a game behind the Clippers for the top of the International League West.
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