PAWTUCKET, R.I. – What better way to answer a six-game losing streak than with a six-game winning streak?
The Indianapolis Indians (31-27) accomplished just that on Friday, beating the Pawtucket Red Sox (27-31) by a final score of 8-1 to notch a sixth consecutive victory. With the win, Indy pulls within 5.5 games of the Toledo Mud Hens for first place in the International League West. It’s the closest they’ve been in the standings since May 29.
The Tribe had their way with PawSox starter Teddy Stankiewicz, who was making his Triple-A debut.
Stankiewicz turned in a scoreless first inning, but Indianapolis got the scoring started with two runs in the second. Four batters reached in the frame, with Pablo Reyes singling home the first run and Kevin Kramer later making it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly.
Indy delivered the knockout blow to Stankiewicz in inning number three.
Jose Osuna led off with a single. Jacob Stallings followed by drawing a walk. Next up, Erich Weiss singled to load the bases. That brought Max Moroff to the plate and he uncorked a grand slam, homering over the right field wall to push the Indians ahead 6-0.
Kramer and Stallings each hit home runs later in the game, in the fourth and seventh innings respectively. Kramer’s long ball was his team-high eighth, while Stallings’ blast was his first of the season.
On the flip side, it was another solid performance from Indianapolis’ pitching staff.
Starter Clay Holmes threw six innings, limiting the Red Sox to one run on six hits and two walks. He also struck out seven batters, tying his season best. Behind Holmes, Casey Sadler and Damien Magnifico blanked Pawtucket. Sadler tossed two innings, giving up only one hit, while Magnifico struck out the side to end it in the ninth.
Thus far on the road trip, the Indians have surrendered just three runs over four games. Indy has outscored their opposition, 28-3.
They aim to keep the good times rolling on the trip on Saturday, with a 6:15 p.m. matchup with the Sox looming. Tyler Eppler (5-2, 3.12 ERA) gets the ball for the Tribe.