LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. – It was not a 20-run win, but the Indianapolis Indians (49-38) still got it done just the same on Friday.
Danny Ortiz and Eric Wood led the charge with three RBIs each, as the Tribe outlasted the Gwinnett Braves (43-43) for a 6-4 victory at Coolray Field.
Ortiz, who hit a couple of homers in Indy’s record-setting win in Columbus on Thursday, again paced the Tribe offensively early on Friday.
Ortiz’s two-run single, paired with a RBI knock from Wood, capped a three-run top of the first that featured five Indians reaching base. We would hear from Ortiz and Wood again later.
First it was Ortiz, who brought home the Tribe’s fourth run of the night in the fifth with a sacrifice fly to right. Starling Marte touched home after leading off the frame with a single, his fourth hit since his rehab with Indianapolis began on Tuesday.
Gwinnett countered with four runs of their own, one in the first and three in the fourth versus Indians righty Nick Kingham.
A walk and a throwing error hurt Kingham in the first, as Sean Rodriguez‘s sac fly got the Braves on the board. Then in the fourth, consecutive singles opened the inning and put the G-Braves in business. This time a fielding error factored into the scoring, as a two-run miscue and a triple allowed the home team to put three more runs up.
Kingham lasted 4 1/3 innings, giving up four runs (one earned) on seven hits and two walks. Despite tying a season-low in innings pitched, Kingham did tie a season-high in strikeouts with eight.
After a rain delay of over an hour, the Indians finally broke a 4-4 tie and put this ballgame away in the eighth.
Joey Terdoslavich singled and Erich Weiss drew a walk, setting the stage for Wood to come through again. Come through again, he did, as Indy’s third baseman ripped a two-run triple that shot the Tribe ahead by a score of 6-4.
Indianapolis held on from there, relying on Johnny Barbato for a six-out save to close it out.
The middle game of this weekend series is slated to get underway at 6:05 p.m. on Saturday. Clay Holmes (5-3, 3.90 ERA) is expected to get the ball for the Indians.