Tribe farmhands follow Kluber's lead
Six Indians' affiliates post wins thanks largely to excellent pitching performances
As Corey Kluber was spinning a three-hit shutout Wednesday against the Mariners at Progressive Field, the Indians' top Minor League affiliates were getting superb pitching of their own. Tyler Cloyd threw a no-hitter at Triple-A Columbus and Double-A Akron shut out Bowie.
In fact, from Cleveland to short-season Mahoning Valley to the club's Dominican Summer League team, the Indians won. The Indians -- plus all six of their affiliates that were in action Wednesday -- won largely because of excellent pitching performances.
The highlight in the Minor Leagues was Cloyd's no-hitter in Columbus' 13-0 victory against Louisville. He entered the ninth having retired all 24 batters he had faced, but his bid for a perfect game ended when he hit Donnie Murphy to lead off the inning. He recovered quickly, inducing Tucker Barnhart to ground into a double play and getting Hernan Iribarren to line out to end the game.
Like Kluber, Cloyd worked efficiently. He faced the minimum and threw only 88 pitches. He struck out six batters. His no-hitter was the first in Columbus' Huntington Park and the seventh in franchise history.
Cloyd's big night came in front of his wife, Tonya, and his daughter, Gracie. After the game he told Clippers broadcaster Scott Leo how much it meant to him to have his family in the stands for his big night.
"I couldn't have done it anywhere else," Cloyd said. "It was awesome that they were here to experience it with me."
Cloyd got plenty of offensive support from the Clippers. First baseman Jesus Aguilar and third baseman Giovanny Urshela, the Indians' Nos. 11 and 14 prospects, respectively, both homered and combined for five runs and six RBIs. Shortstop Francisco Lindor, the Tribe's top prospect, went 0-for-4 with two runs and a walk.
Instead of historic individual performances like Kluber and Cloyd, Akron and Mahoning Valley took a group approach to their shutouts. In Akron's 4-0 victory against Bowie, starter Duke von Schamann combined with two relievers for a five-hit shutout. Led by starter Jordan Carter, four pitchers combined for the shutout as Mahoning Valley edged Tri-City, 1-0.
There were no shutouts for Class A Advanced Carolina and Class A Lake County, but both starters authored quality starts. In the Mudcats' 13-6 victory at Salem, Cole Sulser held Salem to three runs on five hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings. Dace Kime struck out five batters and allowed one run in six innings as Lake County defeated West Michigan, 3-2.
In the Dominican Summer League, 19-year-old right-hander Jose Rodriguez allowed one run over five innings to lead the DSL Indians to a 7-4 victory over the DSL Astros.