August 27, 2018 AZL Indians Blue

Here’s a good old slobberknocker from just two years ago. The Blue Indians sprinted out of the gate in this one, although there was a bit of a false start. Makesiondon Kelkboom walked to start the game, but was caught stealing second. Quentin Holmes then also walked and successfully stole second. After the second out was made, Jon Engelmann singled and Micael Ramirez doubled to bring home the second run of the inning. Billy Wilson then walked, went to second on a HBP of Korey Holland and two more scored on a Gionti Turner single. This lead to a pitching change as the Indians batted around, but Pablo Jimenez was ultimately picked off following a walk with Kelkboom back at the plate.

Since he was still at the plate, Kelkboom was able to lead off the second with a single and he was followed by three straight hits from Holmes, Raynel Delgado and Engelmann. After an out, Wilson walked again, moved up on a Holland single and again on Jimenez’s second walk. Batting around for the second inning in a row, Kelkboom also walked to score a run. Two more scored on an error that allowed Holmes to reach second, then he scored himself on a Delgado single. This was the ninth run of the inning and the Indians were off and running 13-0.

Ethan Hankins made the start for the Indians and allowed just one batter to reach over his two innings pitched, a hit batter in the first. He struck out two in each of his two innings pitched.

Hankins signs autographs prior to a 2018 AZL Indians Blue game at Goodyear Ballpark. – Joseph Coblitz, IBI

The Indians used four walks and two wild pitches in the third to add two more runs despite not hitting safely and, in fact, putting just two balls in play, one of which was an infield fly. Preston Claiborne relieved Hankins in the bottom half on a rehab appearance and allowed a single, but managed to work around Engelmann’s second error of the game to keep the shut out.

Considering neither of the runners who advanced on Engelmann’s errors score, he more than made up for them in the fifth with a two run home run that scored Delgado. Wilton Sanchez continued the solid pitching effort in the bottom half with a hit and wild pitch allowed, but no runs. While the Indians offense finally took an inning off in the top of the fifth, Sanchez got a little wild and allowed two singles, two wild pitches and a sac fly for two runs.

Engelmann got one back in the sixth as he doubled, then scored on a sac fly. This was the Indians 18th and final run of the game. Sanchez stayed on and gave up just a single in the bottom half, but the runner scored thanks to a wild pitch and consecutive ground outs. A walk and double in the seventh gave him his fourth run in his fourth inning. Wuilson Meza finished out final two innings without allowing a hit or walk, although one reached on a Turner error. Without a run over the final two innings, the Indians took this one home 18-4. All four runs came against Sanchez.

Of course, the real heroes in this game were the hitters. Each of the first five hitters and seven overall hit safely twice with the first seven all scored at least two runs. Engelmann lead the way in all categories with four runs, hits and RBI. The team totals were equally kooky as the Indians Blue had 18 runs on 17 hits, 13 walks and stranded 23 runners. Indians pitchers, on the other hand, walked just one.

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