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Indians Minor League Recap: Jean Carlos Mejia dominates, rookie affiliates struggle

It looks like he’s ready for a promotion, to me.

Columbus Clippers 1, Norfolk Tides 8

Box Score · Clipper sink to 61-56

A six-run seventh by the Tides capsized the Clippers in their efforts to come from behind. Making matters worse, only one of these runs was earned.

The Clippers only managed five hits and a walk, with the only extra base knock coming from Bobby Bradley. Eric Haase drove in the only run.

Mitch Talbot pitched a fine start, going six with two earned, two walks, three strikeouts, and three hits. Josh Martin owns the unusual line of two-thirds of an inning pitched with five runs, but none earned. This is because Yandy Diaz misplayed a sharp grounder at first, and instead of recording the third out, he allowed two to score. Three consecutive run scoring singles followed, followed by a wild pitch. Not a good time.

Akron RubberDucks 9, Portland Sea Dogs 10

Box Score · Rubber Ducks deflate to 66-51

The RubberDucks and Sea dogs traded big inning back and forth twice in the game. In the bottom of the third/top of the fourth, they both scored five; in the top and bottom of the seventh, they both scored three. Ultimately the Sea Dogs found the final run in the top of the ninth on a first-pitch single by Bobby Dalbec. The RubberDucks advanced a runner to third with one out in the bottom of the ninth but couldn’t bring him home.

Ka’ai Tom led the way at the plate for the RubberDucks, notching three hits and a walk along with a couple runs driven in. On the whole, Akron drew nine walks, but committing three errors in the field undermined their patience at the plate.

R.C. Orlan and James Karinchak were the only effective pitchers for the RubberDucks on the night; Orlan allowed one hit in one and a third; Lovegrove pitched a perfect inning of his own. I won’t name names, otherwise.

Lynchburg Hillcats 6, Down East Wood Ducks 2

Box Score · Hillcats claw to 56-58

Tanner Tully delivered a quality start, pitching six while allowing five hits, two runs, and two walks along with one home run. Ernie Clement and Gavin Collins led the way in the hit column with two, one of which for each being a double.

Clement, a fourth round pick out of Virginia last season, doesn’t look like he’s going to stop hitting anytime soon. Since his promotion from Lake County the shortstop is hitting .346/.427/.423.

Lake County Captains 3, Fort Wayne Tin Caps 1

Box Score · Captains improve to (gulp) 48-68

I have no idea why Jean Carlos Mejia is still in Lake County.

In twelve starts for the Captains, Mejia owns an ERA of 2.64, a WHIP of 1.07, and 79 strikeouts in 75 innings of work. He’s allowed only two home runs along with 18 walks. I would not be surprised to see him in Akron soon.

He delivered again last night, tossing seven innings of one-run, one-hit baseball, walking one and striking out seven. Jonathan Teaney earned a two-inning save to close out the game.

Jose Vicente and Elvis Perez paced the offense from the middle of the order. Vicente’s two hits included a double and a dinger. Will Benson and Todd Isaacs earned the other two RBIs on the night.

Mahoning Valley Scrappers 2, Williamsport Crosscutters 0

Box Score · Scrappers scrap to 32-20

Juan Mota, Luis Araujo, and Erick Algarin combined for a one-hit shutout last night. It was glorious. The three pitchers combined for eleven strikeouts and only two walks, needing 121 pitches to do it.

At the plate all the Scrappers needed was a two-run home run from Connor Smith in the fourth inning. Mitch Reeves, the man on base at the time, played a fine game; he earned himself two hits and two walks.

Tyler Freeman’s hitting streak came to an end last night at 21 game, as he went 0-3. During the streak, his slash line increased from .355/.405/.455 to .385/.431/.557. That’s acceptable, especially for a teenage shortstop.

DSL Indians 3, DSL Pirates1 4

Box Score · Indians fall to 27-32

Cesar Idrogo hit an RBI single in the first inning and a two-run home run in the third inning. That was the offense.

Roberto Hernandez — who allowed only five runs in his first 36 innings of professional baseball — gave up six earned in one and a third on seven hits and a walk. Daniel Figueroa came in and pitched three and two-thirds of one-run ball. Logan Franco allowed five in two innings. Aduari Vicente pitched a scoreless eighth and lowered his ERA to 14.54. That was the pitching.

Not a good night for the kids, as they also committed three errors.

AZL Indians2 0, AZL Padres 7

Box Score · Indians fall to 23-18

The Indians couldn’t put together hits in the right order. The first four hitters all earned hits, and all but one of them drew a walk to go with it. They just came at the wrong time, and likely still wouldn’t have been enough to overcome seven runs by the Padres.

In a running theme for the night across the board in the Indians’ system, AZL 2 caused Matt Vasgersian to sit up and suddenly yell “OH AND HE BOTCHES IT” twice.

AZL Indians1 6, AZL White Sox 5

Box Score · Indians fall to 27-12

Games like this one make me truly hate the new extra-innings format in the minor leagues. The Indians and White Sox played to a tense three-run tie after nine innings of baseball, but both reached the result in different ways. The White Sox enjoyed a solid start from Yordi Rosario, and while they allowed the Indians to score on run to tie, still pitched well.

The Indians, meanwhile, scrambled after giving up three runs and recording only one out in the first. Matt Turner steadied the ship with nearly five innings of scoreless relief, and Tahnaj Thomas added three of his own. Jake Miednik tossed a scoreless ninth, but ultimately earned the loss in extras.

It just feels like a completely different game starts once you hit extras. The White Sox scored three in the top of the tenth. Miednik gave up three hits in the inning, allowing two plus the automatically inherited runner to score. Meanwhile, in the bottom of the frame, The Indians came within one of tying it back up. Marcos Gonzalez homered with one out, but the next two batters struck out and flew out respectively.