LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The Indianapolis Indians (60-52) got exactly what they needed on Friday night.
Tribe starting pitcher Nick Kingham shut out the Louisville Bats (44-67) on three hits over the course of 7 2/3 stellar innings pitched, as Indy opened a three-game set with a 1-0 win.
The Toledo Mud Hens provided some help as well, as they rallied from a five-run deficit to defeat the Columbus Clippers. The Clips’ loss, combined with the Indians’ win, allows Indianapolis to regain a half game lead in the division standings.
Since giving up a career-high eight runs in a start versus the Durham Bulls on July 19, Kingham has been on fire. That continued in Friday’s contest.
Kingham blanked the Bats on three knocks and three walks, but the shutout did not come easy. Indy’s right-hander was hit in the leg with a line drive in the third and escaped a few jams, including stranding the bases loaded in the fifth.
The 25-year-old entered Friday’s ballgame with consecutive outings of seven innings and one run allowed and after throwing 7 2/3 frames of scoreless ball, his ERA now sits at an even 4.00 mark. Kingham’s ERA was at 5.16 following his tough game in Durham.
Cody Reed got the ball for Louisville and did all he could to match Kingham on the mound. The lefty turned in seven innings of one-run ball, but one run was enough for Indianapolis on this night.
Reed surrendered five hits, two of which set up Indy’s lone bit of offense in the second. Edwin Espinal led off the inning with a single and after Elias Diaz followed with a knock of his own, an error put both runners in scoring position for Chris Bostick. The Indians’ outfielder delivered, using a productive groundout to drive in the only run of the evening.
The Tribe will be back in action at Louisville Slugger Field on Saturday. Game time is slated for 6:35 p.m. with Tyler Glasnow (6-0, 1.46 ERA) scheduled to pitch for the visitors.