2012 Indians Minor League Playoff Preview
The 2012 Minor League Baseball playoffs get underway tonight, and two Indians’ affiliates Low-A Lake County and Double-A Akron are a part of the postseason fun this year.
The minor league playoffs are always something fun to be a part of and the Indians have had an affiliate win a league championship three years in a row. Triple-A Columbus won in back-to-back years in 2010-2011, Lake County won in 2010, and Akron won in 2009, so over the next two weeks Lake County and Akron will look to make it four straight seasons that an Indians' affiliate has brought home the championship hardware.
Akron finished the season with an 82-59 record, and pretty much cruised to the Eastern League’s Western Division title thanks to a hot start that built them a huge lead by the end of June. They square off in a five game divisional series against Bowie (78-64) with Game 1 tonight, and here are the probables and remaining games scheduled for the series:
Wednesday 9/5, Game 1 at Bowie, 7:05 PM ET (RHP Carlos Carrasco, RHP Paolo Espino)
Thursday 9/6, Game 2 at Bowie, 7:05 PM ET (LHP T.J. House)
Friday 9/7, Game 3 vs. Bowie, 7:05 PM ET (RHP Danny Salazar)
Saturday 9/8, Game 4 vs. Bowie (if necessary), 7:05 PM ET (RHP Toru Murata)
Sunday 9/9, Game 5 vs. Bowie (if necessary), 7:05 PM ET (RHP Carlos Carrasco, RHP Brett Brach)
If Akron wins their series they will advance to the Eastern League Championship Series which begins on Tuesday 9/11. The first two games would be in Akron on Tuesday 9/11 and Wednesday 9/12 before an off day on Thursday 9/13 and then shifting to the location of the winner of the Eastern Division playoff for the final three games on Friday 9/14, Saturday 9/15 and Sunday 9/16.
Akron is also getting some reinforcements from all around the system. Outfielder Delvi Cid and shortstop Ronny Rodriguez were promoted yesterday to Akron for the duration of the playoffs, and recently right-hander Hector Rondon was assigned to Akron. In addition to that Akron will also have two Major League rehab assignments playing with them as third baseman Lonnie Chisenhall has joined the team and right-hander Carlos Carrasco will also pitch with Akron as long as they are in the playoffs. Carrasco is only expected to pitch one inning in his start tonight.
Lake County finished the season with a 71-68 record, and made it into the playoffs as a second half wildcard winner going 40-30 in the second half of the season. The Midwest League has eight entries in their playoff pool and two rounds of best-of-three series’ are played before the best of five league championship series. Lake County plays Bowling Green in a best-of-three format starting tonight, and here are the probable and remaining schedule for the series:
Wednesday 9/5, Game 1 vs. Bowling Green, 7:05 PM ET (RHP Cody Anderson)
Thursday 9/6, Game 2 at Bowling Green, 8:05 PM ET (RHP Mason Radeke)
Friday 9/7, Game 3 at Bowling Green (if necessary), 8:05 PM ET (LHP Shawn Morimando)
If Lake County wins their series they will play another best-of-three series against the Fort Wayne-Lansing series winner. If Lansing wins their series then Lake County will play Game 1 at home on Saturday 9/8 before going to Lansing on Sunday 9/9 and Monday 9/10 for Games 2 and 3 (if necessary). If Fort Wayne wins their series, then Game 1 would be in Fort Wayne before moving to Lake County for Game 2 and 3.
If Lake County makes it to the Midwest League Championship Series, the series would start on Wednesday 9/12 and Thursday 9/13 with Games 1 and 2 on the road. After an off day on Friday 9/15 the series would resume with the final three games in Lake County Saturday 9/15, Sunday 9/16 (if necessary), and Monday 9/17 (if necessary).
Lake County is also getting some reinforcements for their playoff run. Yesterday the Indians promoted second baseman Joe Wendle and outfielder Tyler Naquin from short season Single-A Mahoning Valley.
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