This time of the year is always sad. The minors are something different, and exciting, to watch as a baseball fan. Luckily, compared to previous seasons, Cleveland Indians fans have a lot to watch and be excited for in the majors, even if their farm teams will no longer be taking the field.
Three affiliates will prepare for playoffs runs: the Columbus Clippers, the Akron RubberDucks, and the Lynchburg Hillcats. Everyone in the organization finished yesterday with a win (besides the Indians...), and the Mahoning Valley Scrappers should be given two wins as a courtesy.
Columbus Clippers 10, Toledo Mud Hens 2
Box Score · Clippers improve to 82-62
The Columbus Clippers are not stumbling into the postseason. At 82-62 and with two-straight wins, the Indians’ Triple-A affiliates are preparing to win their second-straight Governors’ Cup Championship. They finished the regular season with a 10-2 win over the Toledo Mud Hens and their rehabbing pitcher Jordan Zimmermann.
Jeremy Lucas, recently promoted from the Akron RubberDucks, was 3-for-5 in the win. Yhoxian Medina finished his season strong as well, with a three-hit day, including a solo home run off of Zimmermann.
Everyone in the lineup, except for leadoff batter Collin Cowgill had a hit.
Starting pitcher Shawn Haviland pitched five shutout innings, striking out two and walking one. Jeff Johnson allowed the only runs of the game in his lone inning of relief work.
The Clippers, like everyone else, have an off-day Tuesday, but they start their playoff run on Wednesday. And, best of all, all Clippers home tickets will be free. Tickets can be purchased (well, grabbed, you know) starting Tuesday at 9:00 a.m. ET here.
Akron RubberDucks 8, Bowie Baysox 6
Box Score · RubberDucks improve to 77-64
Like their big brothers in Triple-A, the Akron RubberDucks are playoff-bound. And with last night’s 8-6 win over the Bowie Baysox they also took the Eastern League Western Division crown — their ninth division title in franchise history.
Yan Gomes was 2-for-3 in his rehab start at designated hitter. Alex Monsalve and Daniel Salters also had two hits apiece, while Mike Papi homered in his second-straight game.
Starting pitcher Robbie Aviles did not last long, just 2.1 innings. He allowed two runs off of six hits in that span, striking out just one batter. Jordan Milbrath was given the win after throwing 2.1 excellent innings of relief.
Lynchburg Hillcats 4, Salem Red Sox 0
Box Score · Hillcats improve to 84-56
The Lynchburg Hillcats scored four runs in the first and that was all they needed to win their final game of the regular season. They, too, are destined for the playoffs. They will face the Potomac Nationals starting on Wednesday.
Yonathan Mendoza, Francisco Mejia, Connor Marabell, and Willi Castro all had two-hit games for the Hillcats.
Mejia finishes his incredible 2016 campaign with 139 hits, 29 doubles, four triples, and 11 home runs in 407 at-bats between Single-A and High-A. His slash on the season sits at .342/.382/.514. Just an all-around great year for a potential star behind the plate for the Tribe down the road.
Thomas Pannone has been incredible since his promotion to High-A, and that continued with his final start of the season yesterday afternoon. Pannone threw a seven-inning shutout, striking out eight and walking two. In three starts with the Hillcats, Pannone has thrown 18.1 innings and allowed one earned run with 21 strikeouts.
Lake County Captains 4, Lansing Lugnuts 3
Box Score · Captains 72-68
You cannot ask for a much better ending to a season than a bottom-of-the-ninth walk-off win. That’s exactly what the Lake County Captains did yesterday when Angel Miguel singled home a run to put his team up, 4-3.
Trevor Foss turned in four solid innings for the Captains, striking out seven and walking two.
Mahoning Valley Scrappers 17, West Virginia Black Bears 1
Box Score · Scrappers improve to 37-38
Well, maybe there is one better way to end a season. How about a 16-run blowout? The Mahoning Valley Scrappers did not have a chance to end the season at .500, but with the way they played yesterday it should count as two wins, anyway.
The Scrappers had 17 hits as a team, four coming from the speedster Todd Isaacs and three apiece coming from Jack Goihl and Jonathan Laureano. Goihl and Isaacs also tied for a team-high four runs batted in.
Tanner Tully threw five innings of shutout baseball, striking out four and walking two. Switch-pitcher Ryan Perez pitched a damage-free eighth inning, inducing two pop-ups and a strikeout as a right-handed pitcher, and issuing a walk as a lefty.
Oh no how’d this tweet get in here.
Special thanks to all the MiLBers who provided 40million folks hours of entertainment and just received their last $750 check until April.— Tepid Participation (@TepidP) September 6, 2016