Game Recap 5/19: Gardner Pitches Gem
The Kinston Indians secured their fourth straight series win, as starter Joe Gardner pitched a gem in a 5-3 win over Salem. The Wednesday night win at Historic Grainger Stadium was Kinston's tenth in their last 12 games overall.
Gardner (2-0) picked up his second win of the season, pitching six innings of one hit ball. Gardner struck out eight and has not given up an earned run in his three Kinston starts this season (16 2/3 innings). David Roberts got his third hold of the season from the bullpen and Travis Turek picked up his first save of the year for Kinston.
Jason Kipnis gave the K-Tribe an early cushion with an RBI single driving home Jordan Henry in the bottom of the first inning. Kipnis would add to the Kinston lead in his second at bat, delivering a two RBI double with two outs in the bottom of the third inning. Kipnis ended up 3-for-4 with three RBI. Ronald Rivas and Karexon Sanchez scored on the play, giving the K-Tribe a 3-0 lead. In the top of the seventh inning, Salem threatened to tie the score, but Adam Davis threw out Ryan Dent at home plate to end the inning and preserve a Kinston lead.
The K-Tribe would add insurance in the bottom of the seventh inning. Richard Martinez led off the frame with a double and Lucas Montero followed with a single. Martinez scored on a Rivas double and Montero raced home later on a wild pitch. Montero, Rivas and Sanchez each had two hits.
Columbus takes down G-Braves
The Columbus Clippers defeated the Gwinnett Braves 12-9 on Wednesday night at Coolray Field. Braves starting pitcher Tim Gustafson gave up 7 R/ER on 8 hits in his 4.2 innings of work. Gwinnett (18-21) remains in second place in the International League South and 4 games behind Durham. Columbus (25-16) sits in first place in the IL West and 2 games ahead of Toledo.
In the top of the 7th inning with the score favoring the Clippers 8-6, G-Braves reliever Jeff Lyman loaded the bases and a single off of Cristhian Martinez allowed 2 runs to score for the Clippers. Starter Yohan Pino (5-2) earned the win, striking out 3 in 5 innings. Jensen Lewis earned his first save of the season.
Aeros Take Second Straight From Curve
The Altoona Curve dropped their second straight contest to the Aeros on Wednesday night, falling, 3-1, to Akron at Blair County Ballpark. Eric Berger (1-2) earned the win for Akron while Tim Alderson (2-2) suffers his second loss in as many starts for Altoona.
The Curve actually took the initial lead in the ballgame in the second when Jose de los Santos smashed a ball to second with the bases loaded to plate Josh Harrison from third. Harrison's run was the first for Altoona at home in just over 19 innings as they had been held scoreless at Blair County Ballpark since the fifth inning of the May 11th game versus Harrisburg. With the bases still loaded, Gorkys Hernandez struck out to end the inning but the Curve had the lead, 1-0.
Alderson, who retired the first 10 men he faced in order, surrendered a game-tying home run in the fourth with one away when Jared Goedert hit a home run to left for Akron. After Alderson battled back to get Nick Weglarz, Matt McBride homered to left and Akron was up by one, 2-1. It was the second home run of the series for McBride.
McBride would give the Aeros some more breathing room in the sixth when he hit a sacrifice fly to score Goedert and increase Akron's lead to, 3-1.
Altoona did have its scoring opportunities in the contest but stranded a total of 11 men in the game. The Curve loaded the bases with no one out in the seventh off reliever Connor Graham but Graham struck out Chase d'Arnaud and then induced a double-play ball off the bat of Jordy Mercer.
In the eighth, Altoona threatened once more with two on and one out but Zach Putnam got Miles Durham to fly out and Shelby Ford to bounce back to the mound to end the inning.
White Caps defeat Captains 3-1
The White Caps took advantage of late Captains error to come away with a 3-1 win over Lake County. An RBI triple by Alexis Espinoza scoring Avisail Garcia, in the bottom of the sixth inning put West Michigan in front for good.
The Captains scored their only run in the top of the first inning following a three base error by Garica allowing Argenis Martinez to reach. Bo Greenwell drove in the runner from third with an RBI ground out.
The White Caps tied the game in the bottom half of the first inning. Jamie Johnson drew a leadoff walk, and Michael Rockett's double put two runners in scoring position. Wade Gaynor scored Johnson on a ground ball out hit to third.
West Michigan took the lead in sixth, after Espinoza's RBI triple. The White Caps added some insurance with the help of Lake County, a Marty Popham pitch got by Chun Chen allowing Espinoza to score giving West Michigan 3-1 lead.
Giovanni Soto (3-3) picked up the win going seven innings allowing just one unearned run striking out two. Popham (3-1) suffered his first loss of the season pitching four innings, he allowed two runs but they were both unearned, and finished the day with five strike outs. Jose Ortega recorded his first save pitching the ninth inning, walking one and striking out three.