Mud Hens falter as Indians rally in eighth inning

Toledo Mud Hens
INDIANAPOLIS – The Toledo Mud Hens brought the potential tying run to the plate with one out in the top of the ninth, but a four-run eighth inning from the Indianapolis Indians proved too much to overcome in a 6-2 setback on Friday at Victory Field.

Facing the Tribe’s (5-4) flamethrowing closer Jandel Gustave to lead off the ninth, Derek Hill drew a four-pitch walk and promptly advanced to second on defensive indifference. After Isaac Paredes was hit by a pitch two batters later, Christin Stewart smashed a single off the right-field wall to load the bases with one out. However, the comeback bid came to an end as pinch-hitter Brady Policelli was caught looking, before Aderlin Rodriguez struck out swinging to end the game.

Victor Reyes was one of four Toledo (3-6) batters to record a pair of hits, finishing 2-for-5 with a double, a single and a run, while Renato Núñez and Aderlin Rodriguez each went 2-for-4 with two singles. Isaac Paredes reached base three times, going 2-for-4 with two singles and a HBP, while Derek Hill went 1-for-4 with a double and a walk.

Logan Shore made his second start of the season and struck out five in 4.1 innings of work, surrendering an earned run on two hits and six walks. Drew Carlton added 1.2 scoreless innings out of the Hen Pen, but Robbie Ross Jr. was tagged with the loss after conceding two runs (one earned) in 1+ inning, before Nolan Blackwood yielded three runs (two earned) in his inning of relief.

Indianapolis opened the scoring with a run in the bottom of the second stanza. Chris Sharpe drew a one-out walk, stole second and subsequently advanced to third on a throwing error by Toledo catcher Juan Centeno. Anthony Alford then lined an opposite-field single into right to drive in Sharpe.

The Mud Hens eventually grabbed the lead with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth. Reyes hit a leadoff double into right-center, before Paredes singled through the right side to put runners on the corners with nobody out. Stewart was hit on the foot by a pitch to load the bases, and Reyes eventually scored on a wild pitch to tie the game at one apiece.

The Indians recovered to snatch two outs as Núñez lined out sharply to third, while Isaac Paredes was tagged out at home when Rodriguez grounded a fielder’s choice to third. Toledo’s push continued as Cole Peterson kept the inning alive when he ran out an infield single that re-loaded the bases for Daniel Pinero, who walked to bring home Stewart and give the visitors a 2-1 edge.

Indy restored parity in the bottom of the seventh when Andrew Susac smashed a leadoff home run to left, and managed to keep the Hens from recapturing the lead despite back-to-back singles from Núñez and Rodriguez to start the top of the eighth. The Indians jumped back in front for good in the bottom of the same inning, as Christian Bethancourt and Susac used back-to-back RBI singles to make it a 4-2 contest. Ethan Paul grounded out to bring home Bethancourt, and Susac scored when Blackwood made a wild throw to first on Travis Swaggerty’s ground ball to the right side of the infield. In all, the hosts tallied four runs (two earned) on three hits and two errors in the eighth to come away with the win.

What’s Next:

The Mud Hens and Indians will play the penultimate game of their six-game set on Saturday at Victory Field. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

Hens Notes:

  • Victor Reyes and Isaac Paredes have each recorded hits in four consecutive games.
  • Making his first appearance behind the plate with the Mud Hens, Juan Centeno caught 2-of-4 stolen-base attempts (Kole Tucker in the first inning and Anthony Alford in the second).
  • Dylan Rosa made his Mud Hens debut when he pinch-ran for Renato Núñez in the top of the eighth inning.
  • The Mud Hens left a season-high 13 men on base, finishing 3-for-17 with runners in scoring position.

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