TOLEDO, Oh. – In Friday’s series finale between the Toledo Mud Hens and the Indianapolis Indians, three Toledo pitchers paved the way for Toledo to earn a two-game series split.
Hens starting pitcher Shane Greene led the charge with six innings of one-run baseball, as Toledo notched a 4-1 win over the Indians at Fifth Third Field.
Clayton Richard was scheduled to take the mound for the Tribe, but was traded to the Chicago Cubs for cash considerations before first pitch. Richard had a clause in his contract that forced the Pittsburgh Pirates to promote him to the major leagues or offer his services to a team that would put him on their big league roster. Pittsburgh chose not to call him up, allowing the Cubs to pick up the starter. Richard is currently penciled in to start for Chicago on Saturday.
Chris Volstad was called on to start in place of Richard and the Mud Hens jumped on him early, putting together a two-out rally to grab an 1-0 lead in the first.
Jefry Marte came up with a single after the first two batters of the inning grounded out and then stole second, setting up a good RBI opportunity for Steven Moya. Toledo’s designated hitter would take advantage, shooting a run-scoring single into left to put the Hens in front.
Greene was effective on the mound for Toledo, but ran into his biggest jam of the night in the top of the third.
Willy Garcia and Alen Hanson singled in the inning and after Hanson stole second, both runners were in scoring position with one out for Keon Broxton. Indianapolis’ left fielder would come through, tying the game at one run each with a sacrifice fly to center.
Toledo would answer in their half of the third, though, taking a 3-1 lead against Volstad and the Indians. Four Mud Hen batters would record hits in the inning, highlighted by a Mike Hessman RBI triple and Daniel Fields RBI single.
Volstad would complete 3 2/3 innings for the Indians, allowing three runs on seven hits and three walks in the impromptu start.
Jeff Inman took over for Volstad in the fourth, escaping a scoring threat by leaving the bases loaded, but saw the Mud Hens add to their lead in the fifth.
Hessman led off with a double and after the next two batters went down against Inman, Jeff McVaney recorded Toledo’s fourth two-out RBI of the night with a run-scoring single up the middle to push the Hens’ lead to three runs.
The game would stay locked up at 4-1 the rest of the way, as Mud Hen pitchers cruised to a victory.
Greene made it through the sixth, surrendering one run on six hits and six strikeouts, as he earned his first win of the year. Angel Nesbitt replaced Greene in the seventh and tossed a pair of scoreless innings for Toledo, giving up just one hit in the process. Guido Knudson then came on in the ninth, working around a leadoff walk to earn his second save of the season.
With their short stay in Toledo complete, the Indians will return to Indianapolis for a Fourth of July weekend series with the Louisville Bats. The three-game set begins on Saturday evening, with Adrian Sampson (6-6, 3.76 ERA) set to start for the Tribe. Game time from Victory Field is slated for 6:05 p.m.