AZL Indians pull away late in 8-4 win
GOODYEAR – The AZL Indians stayed hot with the bats on Thursday night resulting in an 8-4 win over the visiting AZL Brewers.
Young right-hander Kieran Lovegrove got the start for the Indians and he bobbed and weaved around trouble all night allowing six hits and two walks in four innings, but only yielding two runs, one of which was earned. Estevenson Encarnacion and Alexis Paredes followed in relief with five solid inning allowing just two runs – one earned – on three hits and three walks while striking out three. Paredes picked up the win and moved to 3-1 on the season, dropping his ERA to 2.31 in the process.
The Brewers started the scoring in the top of the third inning with a one out infield single. With two outs Lovegrove balked the runner to second and then the runner stole third. The runner then scored when third baseman Nick Hamilton fielded a grounder and made a bad throw to first for an error.
The Indians came back in the bottom of the third with a leadoff single by shortstop Juan Herrera, and then he stole second base. A wild pitch pushed him to third, and then he scored on a groundout by left fielder D’Vone McClure to make the score 1-1 after three innings.
In the top of the fourth inning the Brewers once again got on the scoreboard with a one out double. A wild pitch by Lovegrove pushed the runner to third base, and then he scored on a sacrifice fly to right.
In the bottom of the fifth inning Herrera was once again the firestarter drawing a leadoff walk. Right fielder Joshua McAdams reached on an error putting runners as first and second, and then center fielder Mark Brown sacrifice bunted both runners to second and third. McClure followed with a sacrifice fly to center to score Herrera and knot the score at 2-2 after five innings.
The Brewers came back with a run in the top of the sixth inning to take a 3-2 lead, but once again the Indians came right back in the bottom half of the inning. First baseman Nelson Rodriguez lined a double to right with one out and then Hamilton was hit by a pitch. Catcher Martin Cervenka followed with an RBI single up the middle scoring Rodriguez, and then with two outs McAdams found a hole and hit a groundball single to shortstop that scored Hamilton and put the Indians up 4-3.
The Brewers came back and tied the game in the top of the seventh inning, but as was the case all night the Indians came right back with a counter punch, but this time knocked them out with a four-run seventh. McClure lead the inning off with a walk and then stole second base. Second baseman Claudio Bautista followed with a line drive single to right to score McClure. Designated hitter Dorsyss Paulino singled to center and then both he and Bautista executed a double steal of third and second, and then Rodriguez hit a sacrifice fly to center to score Bautista. After a Hamilton walk and steal of second base, Cervenka hit a sacrifice fly to right that scored Paulino. The final run of the inning came thanks to an error on a Herrera grounder to third that scored Hamilton.
The AZL Indians are off today, but return to action on Saturday night when they take on the AZL Royals. Right-hander Dillon Howard is expected to get the start for the rookie Tribe.
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