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Smith-Njigba's Two-Run Triple Not Enough in Indians' 8-3 Loss to Toledo

May 17, 2024 - International League (IL)
Indianapolis Indians News Release

INDIANAPOLIS - Canaan Smith-Njigba laced a game-tying, two-run triple in the third inning, but the Toledo Mud Hens scored single runs in five of their last six trips to the plate to hand the Indianapolis Indians an 8-3 setback on Friday night at Victory Field.

Moments after Smith-Njigba split the left-center gap and swam around the tag on a head-first slide at third base to tie the game, 3-3, Parker Meadows put the Mud Hens (24-18) on top in the fourth inning with a sacrifice fly. Jace Jung and Akil Baddoo launched solo home runs in the fifth and seventh, and Justyn-Henry Malloy and Buddy Kennedy added run-scoring hits in the final two frames to give the Mud Hens breathing room.

Daulton Jefferies - making his Pirates organizational debut - surrendered three runs on five hits in the second inning, two coming on a double by former Indian Bligh Madris and another on a two-bagger by Meadows. The Indians (18-21) clawed back to pull even thanks to Andrés Alvarez reaching on a bases-loaded infield single in the bottom of the second and Smith-Njigba's second triple of the season that plated Jake Lamb and Malcom Nuñez, but the offense couldn't break through late, despite putting a runner on in each of the final six innings.

Brenan Hanifee (W, 1-2) took over for Bryan Sammons in the fourth inning and recorded five outs to earn the win. Wily Peralta (L, 1-1) pitched 2.0 innings in relief of Jefferies and yielded two earned runs on three hits, including Jung's seventh home run of the season, to suffer the loss.

Ji Hwan Bae notched a double, walk and stolen base in his two-hit performance, and Smith-Njigba reached base safely in three of four plate appearances, adding two walks to go with his triple.

Indianapolis and Toledo meet again on Saturday at 6:35 PM. Neither team has named its probable starting pitcher.

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