It was a tough week for the Clippers as they dropped five of six games to the Gwinnett Stripers, the Atlanta Braves’ Triple-A team. After several weeks of impressive offense, the Clippers’ bats fell virtually silent all series. They were nearly no-hit on Thursday in a 1-0 loss where lefty Tanner Tully pitched well enough to win. Kirk McCarty had a rough start on Tuesday, but bounced back with a solid start Sunday afternoon. But the offense could not muster much at the plate and the bullpen imploded.

Outfielder Will Benson hit a home run this week, but it was his only hit in the three games he played. Benson has struggled since being promoted from Double-A Akron a few weeks ago, although his power has been on display when he has been able to get his bat on the ball. The most concerning thing that developed during the series is that shortstop Gabriel Arias exited Thursday’s game and has not played since. Hopefully if he did suffer an injury it is not serious as he deserves a shot to finish his first Triple-A season on a high note.


Tuesday, 9/7 – L 7-2, W: Muller, L: Kirk McCarty (7-5)

Wednesday, 9/8 – L 5-2, W: Wright, L: Cody Morris (1-1), S: Kelley

Thursday, 9/9 – L 1-0, W: Elder, L: Tanner Tully (0-3), S: Lopez

Friday, 9/10 – L 6-3, W: Rodriguez, L: Heath Fillmyer (3-7)

Saturday, 9/11 – W 3-0, W: Matt Koch (4-2), L: Johnstone, S: Kevin Herget (1)

Sunday, 9/12 – L 8-2, W: Muller, L: Juan Mota (2-2)

Player of the Week

Ernie Clement – 6-21, 2 R, 4 BB, 5 SO, 2 2B, SAC, CS

Clement wins this accolade because he was the best hitter in a bad lineup this week, and because his double in Thursday’s 1-0 loss was the only hit that kept the Clippers from being no-hit. He also had an impressive three-hit game to open the series on Tuesday. For the series, Clement hit well in the first four games and then went cold over the weekend. Defensively, Clement continued to show off his amazing versatility, logging innings at second base, shortstop and third base this week. Clement did commit fielding errors at shortstop on Thursday and Saturday, but during his time with Cleveland this season and since his return to the Clippers there is no question he can handle defensively almost any spot in the field.

Who’s Hot

LHP Tanner Tully – 5.0 IP, 3 H, ER, 0 BB, 4 SO, HR, L

Tully was of the lone bright spots for the pitching staff this week, taking the tough luck loss in Thursday’s 1-0 game. Tully did more than enough to earn the win, if only his offense could have mustered any signs of life behind him. He pitched five strong innings, walked no one, struck out four, and gave up only one run, a homer to Gwinnett first baseman Ryan Casteel. After a very solid start last week against the St. Paul Saints, Tully is finding success after being promoted from Akron for the second time this season.

RHP Robert Broom – 4.0 IP, H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 2 SO

Broom was the other bright spot for the Clippers’ pitching staff this week. He led the way in the bullpen start on Saturday, setting the team up for its only win of the series. Broom started the game and did not give up a hit. He walked two and struck out one. On Thursday Broom pitched a scoreless inning of relief, where he gave up a lone hit and struck out one. Broom has been inconsistent out of the bullpen this season, but this was a really good week for him and hopefully he can build on it to end the season.

2B Richie Palacios – 5-15, 2B, RBI, BB, 4 SO, SB

It was a lousy week for the Clippers’ offense, but Palacios played reasonably well in comparison to other bats in the lineup. He is showing signs that he can handle Triple-A pitching, as he is ow batting .274/.404/.397 in 73 at-bats with Columbus. While he has not flashed much power, he has shown the ability to put bat on ball and work walks. The brief injury he suffered a few weeks ago does not seem to have any lingering effects, and he hit in four of five games this series.

Who’s Not

RHP Juan Mota – 1.0 IP, 2 H, 4 ER, 4 BB, 0 SO

Mota pitched out of the bullpen twice this series, and both outings were lousy. On Wednesday, Mota pitched an inning and gave up two hits, a walk and an earned run. Sunday’s outing was worse, as Mota came on in the seventh in relief of Kirk McCarty who pitched six innings of two-run ball. Mota proceeded to give up three walks and three earned runs without recording an out. Mota throws hard, he has a fastball that clocks at 97-98. But he needs to learn to harness that fastball and his command to find success.

C Bryan Lavastida – 1-11, BB, 7 SO

Cleveland catcher Roberto Perez was on a rehab assignment this week with Columbus, and therefore Lavastida only played in four games. But those four games resulted in only one hit in eleven at-bats, along with one walk and seven strikeouts. Lavastida, recently promoted from Akron, likely needs time to adjust to a new pitching staff and Triple-A hitting. With so much on the young catcher’s plate, this just was not his week.


SP J.C. Mejia – on September 7 Cleveland optioned Mejia to Columbus.

C Roberto Perez – on September 7 Cleveland sent Perez on a rehab assignment to Columbus.

INF Ernie Clement – on September 7 Cleveland optioned Clement to Columbus.

C Angel Lopez Alvarez – on September 8 Cleveland assigned Lopez Alvarez to Columbus from Lake County.

C Gianpaul Gonzalez – on September 10 Cleveland sent Gonzalez outright to Columbus.

OF Daniel Johnson – on September 11 Cleveland optioned Johnson to Columbus.

RP Francisco Perez – on September 11 Cleveland recalled LHP Perez from Columbus.

Up Next

The Clippers head out on a two week road trip before returning hope to finish up the season with a series against the Louisville Bats. First up is a six game series at the Toledo Mud Hens starting on Tuesday, September 14.

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