INDIANAPOLIS – In his Indianapolis Indians debut on May 13, starting pitcher Clayton Richard shut out the Pawtucket Red Sox on his way to a win. On Monday night at Victory Field, Pawtucket got a second shot at Richard and knocked off the Indiana native.
Richard gave up three runs on seven hits and four walks in 5 2/3 innings of work as the Indians dropped the series opener to the Red Sox by a score of 7-4.
The Indians would give Richard an early cushion when they scored two runs against Pawtucket starter Eduardo Rodriguez in the first.
Gorkys Hernandez led off with a double down the right field line and Alen Hanson followed by driving him in on a RBI double to the same spot. Deibinson Romero would then give the Tribe a 2-0 advantage with a RBI single, his 24th run batted in of the season.
Richard and Rodriguez would exchange scoreless innings until the fifth, when the Red Sox grabbed the lead with one swing of the bat.
After retiring the first two batters of the frame, Richard would surrender back-to-back singles before walking Bryce Brentz to load the bases. Luis Jimenez would follow by bringing everyone home on a three-RBI triple, putting Pawtucket ahead 3-2.
Richard would exit the game after giving up a pair of singles in the sixth, giving way to Adam Miller out of the Indianapolis bullpen. Miller would record the final out of the inning, keeping Indianapolis’ deficit at just one run.
The Indians would take advantage of Miller getting out of the jam, tying the game with a run against Rodriguez in their half of the sixth.
Tony Sanchez led off the frame with a triple to left and Elias Diaz brought him home with a sacrifice fly to right, making the score 3-3 after six innings.
The Red Sox would answer in the top of the seventh, leaving Miller with the loss. After Allen Craig grounded out to begin the inning, Brentz hit a solo home run to right center to put Pawtucket back in front. Bobby LaFromboise took over after Miller surrendered a single to Jimenez, getting a double play against the first batter he faced to end the frame.
Chris Volstad replaced LaFromboise in the eighth, but gave up another run to Pawtucket in the process. Humberto Quintero singled to begin the inning and after stealing second, Jeff Bianchi would drive him in with a RBI single to give the Red Sox a two-run advantage.
Rodriguez would surrender three runs on seven hits in his 6 2/3 innings of work, with the Indians scoring a run in the eighth against the Pawtucket reliever Jonathan Aro to cut the PawSox’s lead in half.
Sanchez got the inning started with his second extra base hit of the night, this time on a double to left. Brent Morel grounded out to the shortstop to advance Sanchez to third and Diaz grounded out to second to bring Sanchez home, making it a 5-4 game.
In the ninth, Pawtucket put the game out of reach with a pair of insurance runs against Brad Lincoln, the Indians’ final pitcher of the night.
With one out in the inning, Jimenez singled and Travis Shaw drew a walk before Quintero hit a RBI double to right to push Pawtucket’s lead back to two runs. An intentional walk then loaded the bases for Bianchi, who gave the Red Sox a 7-4 advantage with a RBI single.
Heath Hembree then entered the game in the ninth, retiring the Indians in order to earn his fifth save of the season to give Pawtucket a 7-4 win.
The Tribe will look to tie the three-game series at one win each when the two teams meet at Victory Field again on Tuesday night. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. with Charlie Morton (1-0, 1.29 ERA) set to make his second rehab start with Indianapolis.