Donald hits for cycle in Clippers 13-2 victory
CHARLOTTE - The Clippers’ bats were out in full force Tuesday night as Columbus throttled the Charlotte Knights on way to a 13-2 victory.
Columbus (34-38) had 19 hits—four doubles, two home runs—and scored in five of their nine at-bats in Charlotte. The win comes one day after the Clippers struggled at the plate in a 5-2 loss in which they had just five hits and left five runners on base.
The story of the game, though, was Jason Donald.
The Clippers’ third baseman hit for the cycle, going 4-for-6 with four RBIs and two runs scored. Donald homered to center field in the top of the first, hit a triple and single in the third, and doubled in his final at-bat of the game in the ninth. Donald is just the second International League player to accomplish that feat this season.
While Donald stole the show, almost every Clipper in the lineup Tuesday had a solid performance at the plate. Center fielder Tim Fedroff, batting in the leadoff spot, went 3-for-5 with a double and a run scored. Columbus’ No.4-No.7 hitters combined to go 9-for-19 with a double, a home run, and five RBIs.
Columbus got out to a good start with two runs in the first, but they really made their mark in the third with a seven-run inning to go up, 9-0.
Donald led off the inning with his triple, and after first baseman Matt LaPorta brought Donald home with a single, left fielder Russ Canzler hit a three-run homer to left-center field. Canzler, who was named the International League Batter of the Week earlier in the day, went 2-for-4.
Columbus had a total of six hits and eight batters reach base in the third. The offensive outburst caused Knights’ starter, right-hander Anthony Carter, to be taken out after 2.1 innings of work.
The Clippers cooled a bit, relatively, after the third inning, scoring four runs over the game’s next six innings. They did put a major dent into the Charlotte bullpen, as six different Knights’ made appearances on the mound Tuesday.
Starting for Columbus, left-hander Corey Kluber lasted six innings while giving up one-earned run. He struck out nine Knights, the most since a 10-strikeout game on May 10.
Columbus and Charlotte will play game three of the series on Wednesday afternoon at 12:15 p.m.