Hens’ bats go silent as Indians even series

Toledo Mud Hens

Toledo, Ohio – The Mud Hens lost a close one with the Indianapolis Indians tonight, falling by a score of 2-1. Depending on the outcome of the St. Paul vs. Omaha game, Toledo will either slide to three games back of first place Omaha or will remain two games out. Regardless, offense was at a premium for both the Mud Hens and Indians tonight, with the Hens ultimately coming up just short. Toledo’s lone run came from a Kody Clemens sacrifice fly in the sixth that then tied the game. Starter Pedro Payano had an up and down start who despite often having men on base, turned in one of his best outings of the season. Reliver Alex Lange would be charged with the loss in this one, giving up an RBI single in the bottom of the seventh that proved to be the diffrence.

The Mud Hens started the game quietly, falling in order in the top of the first. RHP Pedro Payano had to navigate some traffic on the basepaths in the bottom of the inning, surrendering back to back one out singles. Payano successfully navigated the threat, keeping the game knotted at 0-0.

The Hens would fall victim to another 1-2-3 inning to start the second as Indianapolis pitching continued to deal. There was additional traffic on the basepaths for Indy in the bottom of the second with a one out solo shot giving the Indians a 1-0 lead. Payano then surrendered back to back singles, continuing the threat. A key groundout and strikeout would later strand both runners, keeping the score 1-0.

The Mud Hens continued their quiet offensive performance in the top of third as Indy starter Steven Brault continued to shine, retiring the side in order yet again. Payano had a bounce back inning in the bottom of the third, retiring the Indians in order on three straight groundouts.

The Hens failed to get a man on base yet again in the fourth, as Steven Brault pitched what would be his final inning in a masterful start. Payano faced the three minimum batters again in the bottom of the inning, assisted by a double play ball that erased a leadoff single.

The Mud Hens got their first hit of the game in the top of the fifth, capitalizing on Indianapolis going to the bullpen. The hit came courtesy of Yariel Gonzalez, but Juan Centro also reached on a single shortly after. While neither came into score the Hens were showing some life on offense. Payano pitched another scoreless inning in bottom of the inning, the only blemish coming from a one out single that was left on base.

JaCoby Jones drilled a double to left field in the top of the sixth but would pull up to second with an injury. Christin Stewart entered the game in place of Jones, advancing to third on a wild pitch before coming into score on a Kody Clemens sacrifice fly. Now tied 1-1, Jacob Robson and Renato Nunez would also draw walks, but were left on base. Payano got into some hot water in bottom of the sixth, hitting two batters and walking one. Payano was able to get out of the jam without giving up a run though, keeping the game tied 1-1.

The Hens were limited to Yariel Gonzalez walk in the top of the seventh before an inning ending double play negated their chances of scoring. RHP Alex Lange took over for Payano in the bottom of the inning, giving up the leadoff walk to came back to haunt him as a stolen base and single quickly made it 2-1 in favor of the Indians.

Cole Peterson and Jacob Robson both singled in the top of the eighth, but a double play eliminated the scoring threat. RHP Jason Foley relieved Lange in the bottom of the inning, working his way around a leadoff walk in a scoreless inning.

Aderlin Rodriguez launched a double in the top of the ninth but it was too little too late for the Hens as Indianapolis work their way around Rodriguez to secure the win.

What’s Next: The Mud Hens take on the Indianapolis Indians tomorrow night in game five of a six game series. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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