August 15, 2019 Columbus Clippers

This happened just a year ago, but was easy to miss if you weren’t watching the entire franchise at once. Thanks to a pile of delayed games, the Indians franchise played twelve minor league games in one day. Overall, they were not particularly effective as the DSL Indians split their double header and the Hillcats were swept, but the Clippers did manage to get a pair of wins against Gwinnet.

In game one, Shao-Ching Chiang made the start and allowed the first run in the first on a Pedro Florimon solo shot. He didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning until the fifth and even then used a double play to eliminate a runner after a hit. Stripers starter Touki Toussaint was pulled from the game after five shut out innings and his replacement was no where near as solid. Yu Chang walked to start the inning and went to second on a Daniel Johnson hit. After an Eric Haase strike out, Ka’ai Tom and Max Moroff (pictured at top) singled consecutively followed by a Jake Bauers double to bring both home. With just one inning left, the Clippers finally erased the first inning 1-0 lead of Gwinnet and flipped things completely to 4-1.

Shao-Ching Chiang
Chiang walks towards the mound during 2020 Indians spring training practice in Goodyear, AZ. – Joseph Coblitz, IBI

Now with the lead, Chiang had his first perfect inning in the bottom of six. The game wrapped up an inning later as both teams added solo home runs in the seventh. Johnson hit one amidst three K’s in the top half, then Alex Jackson took Chiang deep in the bottom half for the second Stripers run.

It was a very good thing for Columbus that Chiang was able to pitch a complete game in the opener as game two was a full bullpen game. Kyle Nelson started, but was pulled after retiring four first five batters of the game with four strike outs and a double allowed. Jon Edwards replaced him and retired two more without a base runner. Hector Hernandez retired five hitters in the third thanks to a wild pitch and a passed ball on strike outs, but didn’t allow a hit or run. He did walk one to start the fourth, but that runner was caught stealing by Dioner Navarro and Jared Robinson finished the inning with a K.

While double plays had been crushing every Clippers offensive opportunity to this point, they finally got on the board in the top of four. Tom lead the inning off with a homer, but that would be if for the moment.

They continued in the fifth when Mark Mathias doubled and came home on a Jake Bauers homer. Robinson stayed in to pitch the bottom half and immediately gave that back up on a Sean Kazmar triple and a pair of singles. Rob Kaminsky came in to save him with one out and two on and allowed an RBI single, but used a double play to get out of the inning with a one run lead still intact.

Jake Bauers1
Bauers observes batting practice during 2020 Indians MLB spring training. – Joseph Coblitz, IBI

Kaminsky would get one more out before James Karinchak came in to strike everyone out. The Clip Show would add to their lead in the top of seven after leading the inning off with three straight hits including a Navarro double, but that didn’t score the runs. One came across after these hits when Eric Stamets reached on a fielder’s choice, then Stamets scored on a Jake Bauers single. Bauers was out at second trying to turn it into a double, making it so all three outs were recorded on the bases as Johnson was caught stealing and Navarro was thrown out going to third on Stamets ground ball.

Karinchak struck out his third batter in the final frame, but walked three and allowed a single, giving up another Stripers run. He was replaced by James Hoyt with the bases loaded and one out and Hoyt managed to strike out the next two hitters to hold onto the 5-3 lead and earn a save.

Combined, Clippers pitchers struck out 22 in 14 innings with six walks and 12 hits allowed. Bauers was the big hero offensively with five RBI on the day on three hits in eight at bats.


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.