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Playoff Recaps 9/20: Columbus repeats as Triple-A champs

September 21, 2011
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Juan Diaz in action on Tuesday night.
(Photo: AP)
This is starting to look too easy.

On Tuesday night the Columbus Clippers defeated the Pacific Coast League champion Omaha Storm Chasers by a final score of 8-3 for their second straight Triple-A National Championship.

With the win Clippers manager Mike Sarbaugh is a perfect two-for-two not only in winning the International League title but also the Triple-A title in his first two years as manager for Columbus.

Right-hander Joe Martinez was solid going seven strong innings allowing just three runs on six hits, three walks and had three strikeouts. After a rough first inning where he allowed three runs on three hits and a walk, he settled down by not allowing a run and only three hits in his final six innings of work. He was named the game's MVP.

Martinez finished the postseason going 3-0 with a 2.45 ERA in three starts covering 22.0 innings. The start was impressive in that he was not the scheduled starter as the Indians made a last minute change to remove schedule starter Mitch Talbot so he could be available if needed to pitch in Cleveland this weekend.

The 3-0 deficit for the Clippers did not last long as catcher Luke Carlin slammed a two out three-run homer in the bottom of the second inning to tie the game. From there it was all Clippers as they took the lead with a three run third highlighted by a run scoring double by third baseman Jared Goedert and a run scoring single by first baseman Beau Mills.

Columbus added another run in the fourth inning on an RBI bloop single by outfielder Tim Fedroff to make it 7-3, and then Mills put an exclamation point on the win with a solo homer to the opposite field in the 8th inning.

With the win Columbus is not just the second team to win back-to-back Triple-A National Championships (Sacramento 2007-2008). They now get a chance to be the first to three-peat if they can go all the way again next year.

Congrats to Mike Sarbaugh, his staff, the players, and the entire Columbus Clippers and Cleveland Indians organization on another great year and for being champions of the International League and all of Triple-A!

Follow Tony and the Indians Prospect Insider on Twitter @TonyIPI. Also, his latest book the 2011 Cleveland Indians Top 100 Prospects & More is available for purchase for $20.95 to customers in the US (shipping and handling extra). Use discount code 2Z6F362B to receive 40% off the book through the site store!

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