Toledo treks past Indy for eighth straight triumph

Toledo Mud Hens

INDIANAPOLIS, IN.: The white-hot Mud Hens rushed out to a six-run advantage, held off a furious mid-game charge from the Indians, and Toledo leaned on its solid bullpen at the end to defeat Indianapolis, 9-6, on Friday evening at Victory Field.
With the victory, the Mud Hens matched their season-high

INDIANAPOLIS, IN.: The white-hot Mud Hens rushed out to a six-run advantage, held off a furious mid-game charge from the Indians, and Toledo leaned on its solid bullpen at the end to defeat Indianapolis, 9-6, on Friday evening at Victory Field.

With the victory, the Mud Hens matched their season-high winning streak of eight consecutive games, won a season-best sixth straight true road contest, and secured a set victory over the Indians with two encounters to go.

John Valente began his big night at the dish with a lead-off single opposite Indians starter Jared Eickhoff. He would score later in the first on a sacrifice fly from Daz Cameron to guide Toledo in front, 1-0.

The Mud Hens created some serious separation with a four-run second inning in which the first six hitters reached base. Jamie Westbrook notched a two-base hit to begin the events, and then immediately came in on an RBI knock from Corey Joyce for the first tally. Ali Sanchez added in a double of his own to place two on base, and Jack Lopez proceeded to slap a grounder at Indians third baseman Kevin Padlo that he could not handle, resulting in both runners scoring. Lopez and Valente pulled off a successful double steal during Josh Lester’s at-bat, and he obliged by driving in Lopez with a sacrifice fly to cap the damage and push the margin to 5-0.

Padlo walked against Toledo hurler Ricardo Sanchez to open the bottom of the second. He would come across on a fielder’s choice hit into by Jared Oliva to get a run back for Indy, 5-1.

Joyce continued his remarkable tear at the dish by launching a two-run bomb in the top of the third inning, his first as a Mud Hen and tenth of the year, to bump the Toledo advantage to 7-1.

Eickhoff (6-7) would accept the losing end of the decision for Indianapolis, surrendering six hits and seven runs across three stanzas.

The Indians slugged five hits and charged right back into the game with a five-run bottom of the fourth. It was highlighted by a two-run blast from Oliva, an RBI single from Brendt Citta, and a two-run double from Blake Sabol that chased Sanchez from the contest. Nolan Blackwood promptly entered in relief and fanned Padlo to end the threat.

Sanchez yielded nine hits, six earned runs, two walks, and mixed in four strikeouts over 3 and 2/3’s frames while not factoring in the decision.

With Cameron and Westbrook in scoring position, Joyce came up clutch once again, swatting a key two-run double into the left field corner for some needed insurance and a 9-6 Toledo edge. This hit assured that Joyce began his Triple-A career by going 6-6 at the plate. He finished the evening with a career-high five RBIs and two runs scored.

Westbrook went 3-4 and reached base four times on the evening, extending his on-base streak to six straight assignments in the process. Valente and Sanchez also recorded two hits and moved their on-base streaks to four and thirteen games, respectively.

Lester and Brendon Davis successfully advanced their on-base streaks to nine.

Five pitchers out of Toledo’s bullpen completely stymied the Indianapolis offense over the final 5 and 1/3’s innings. Starting with the punch out to conclude the fourth, Blackwood (2-1), Cody Sedlock, Nick Vincent, Drew Carlton, and Miguel Diaz combined to retire fourteen straight Indians batters until Tucupita Marcano and Travis Swaggerty banged consecutive singles in the ninth. Diaz then induced a 4-6-3 double play to finish the game and ensure his fourth save.

NEXT UP: The Mud Hens will look for their season-high ninth consecutive victory and fifth straight over Indianapolis on Saturday evening at 6:35 p.m.

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