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Juan Hillman strikes out career-high nine batters for Lake County

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Cleveland Indians minor league recap for July 10, 2017.

Columbus Clippers 2, Norfolk Tides 3

Box Score · Clippers fall to 46-42

The Columbus Clippers managed just four hits against the Norfolk Tides yesterday, while striking out 11 times. Four of those whiffs came from Adam Moore, who wore a golden sombrero for the day — 0-for-4, four strikeouts.

Ryan Merritt got the start for the Columbus and turned in six solid innings. He struck out six, walked one, and allowed two runs off eight hits. In his last three starts for Columbus, he has allowed three runs over 21 innings with 16 strikeouts.

Another name that should be familiar to Indians fans, Perci Garner, made his second relief appearance for the Clippers this season. His first was disaster, when he allowed four runs and five walks in one inning. He only faced one batter yesterday, but he got him out and did his job.

Akron RubberDucks 7, Altoona Curve 6

Box Score · RubberDucks improve to 44-41

It took a dramatic, four-run inning in the bottom of the ninth, but the Akron RubberDucks walked off their 44th win of the season yesterday. Yonathan Mendoza played “hero” on the day, drawing a walk with the bases loaded to push the winning run home after the Altoona Curve intentionally walked Luigi Rodriguez.

Bobby Bradley has done a lot of work improve his strikeout rate this season, but he struck out three times yesterday. The good news is that’s only the fourth time he’s struck out more than twice this season. He did so 15 times last season.

Eric Haase, the other catcher on the Akron RubberDucks, continues to play a pivotale backup role to Francisco Mejia. Haase went 3-for-5 last night, and he is 17-for-40 with five home runs over his last 10. At 24 years old, it might not be long before Mejia-Haase is the catching duo in Cleveland.

Yu-Cheng Chiang continues to climb out of his early-season slump with his 19th home run of the season, a towering shot to left field that cut the RubberDucks’ deficit in half early on.

The ‘Ducks turned to Matt Whitehouse for the start, who promptly turned in his worst outing of the season by allowing six runs over five innings. The bullpen duo of Robbie Aviles and Neil Holland held the Curve scoreless over the final four frames.

Lynchburg Hillcats 4, Salem Red Sox 3

Box Score · Hillcats improve to 53-35

The Best Team in the Indians Organization continued their winning ways with a 4-3 win over the Salem Red Sox.

Martin Cervenka and Gavin Collins each had three hits for the Lynchburg Hillcatss — the latter also added a home run and four runs batted in. Dominic DeMasi pitched a scoreless five innings and Argenis Angulo closed out the game to earn a win.

Lake County Captains 5, West Michigan Whitecaps 4

Box Score · Captains improve to 36-51

Juan Hillman has had a rocky career since being drafted in the second round of the 2015 draft, but last night was one of his best starts ever. The 20-year-old struck out nine West Michigan Whitecaps batters en route to his fourth win of the season.

The nine strikeouts were a career high for Hillman, and it was just his fourth shutout in which he pitched five or more innings. And just for good measure, he only walked one opponent.

Offensively, the bottom of the Lake County Captains order came through big time. Alexis Pantoja and Miguel Eladio combined to go 4-for-6 in the eighth and ninth spots in the lineup, while Luke Wakamatsu added a home run from the leadoff spot. Mitch Longo, who has been on an absolute tear since returning from a wrist injury, had his 13-game hitting streak snapped with an 0-for-2 day. He did draw a walk, so his on-base streak lives at 14 games.

Mahoning Valley Scrappers 7, Williamsport Crosscutters 8

Box Score · Scrappers fall to 10-10

Despite a furious ninth-inning rally that brought them within a single run, the Mahoning Valley Scrappers fell to .500 on the season with a 8-7 loss to the Williamsport Crosscutters.

Jesse Berardi led the way with three hits. The 21-year-old shortstop is 16-for-38 with four doubles this season, good for a .421/.436/.526 slash.

Will Benson’s strikeout issues continued, as he whiffed two more times yesterday. He has already struck out 26 times this season (15 games), but he did draw two walks yesterday, which is a step in the right direction. He also notched his first hit since July 4.

AZL Indians 4, AZL D-backs 6

Box Score · Indians fall to 4-9

More 2017 draft picks are beginning to funnel into the AZL Indians, including catcher Joshua Rolette, who was drafted in the 39th round. He recorded a hit in his debut. Tre Gantt, a 29th-round pick in this year’s draft, went 1-for-1 with three walks.

The Tribe’s first overall pick in the draft, Tyler Freeman, has not settled in enough to show his speed on the bases, but he is 9-for-24 in the early stages of his career. As a side note, he was born on May 21, 1999, which is way too close to 2000, which is way too close to making me feel extremely old.


The DSL Indians had a scheduled off-day.