August 8, 2010

Indians catch Bears

Spokane topples Yakima again
 

During a stretch in which

the Spokane Indians play

Yakima six times in seven

days, the Indians are getting

used to making life miser

able for the Bears.

Yakima entered Sunday

leading the

Northwest

League

East Div

ision stand

ings with a

7-4 record

and in the

hunt for the second playoff

spot, but surrendered a 4-1

lead in the fifth inning to

Spokane, and the Indians

went on to beat Yakima for

the fourth time in five at

tempts, 6-5 at Avista Stadi

um.

The Indians (7-5 in the se

cond half) rallied after giv

ing up four runs in the top of

the fifth to score five of their

own in the bottom of the in

ning, chasing Yakima re

liever Keith Cantwell (3-3)

with a two-out, two-run

double by Jake Skole. The

double by Skole broke a 4-4

tie and gave the Indians the

lead for good.

“We don’t have the same

kind of pressure on us (to

win) and we can just come

out and enjoy the game of

baseball,” said Indians first

baseman Andrew Clark,

who went 2 for 4 with two

RBIs. “It was nice to get the

win and we still have four

games left with them.

We’re not going to take any

game for granted and obvi

ously we want to win.”

The offensive eruption

in the fifth inning helped

get Roman Mendez off the

hook after the Spokane

starter allowed four runs in

the top of the fifth inning.

Mendez, who went five

shutout innings in his first

start since being traded

from the Boston Red Sox

organization, looked to be

cruising yet again in his se

cond start.

It fell apart for the third-

year pro, though, with two

outs in the fifth. A line drive

to left field was misplayed

by Jared Hoying, allowing

Tom Belza to score. The

Bears’ next hitter, Mike

Weber, belted a fastball ov

er the right-field fence to

give Yakima a 3-1 lead.

The Bears struck for one

more run to end Mendez’s

night.

Despite the struggles in

the fifth, Mendez finished

42/3 innings with five stri

keouts and four runs (zero

earned).

“He fits in (the club

house) real well, we’ve wel

comed him real good and

he likes it over here,” Skole

said. “He threw great to

night. There were a couple

of pitches I’m sure he’d like

back but other than that

he’s been great for us.”

Clark added he wouldn’t

be surprised to see the

dominant right-hander get

the call up to the Class A ad

vanced league before too

long.

In six starts with the

Greenville Drive, Mendez

was 0-2 with an ERA of

11.40 and 18 strikeouts.

Since his arrival in Spo

kane, though, he is 1-0 with

13 strikeouts in 92/3 innings

and hasn’t allowed an

earned run.

Tim Steggall (3-1)

pitched 21/3 scoreless in

nings to earn the win for

the Indians, and Colby Kil

lian dodged a bases-loaded

jam in the ninth inning to

earn his third save of the

season.

Note

Alejandro Selen hit

his first home run of the

season Sunday, ending a

45-at-bat skid without a

homer. Before the season

opener, Selen won the

home run derby held

among the players during

the three-day mini-camp.


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