Owens pitches gem but Bats beat Tribe with walk-off 3-run homer

Tribe hurlers Rudy Owens and Doug Slaten combined for 8.0 shutout innings and the Indianapolis Indians had a 2-0 lead going into the final frame, but Louisville pinch hitter Daryl Jones smacked a two-out, three-run home run in the bottom of the ninth to give the Bats a 3-2 win on Sunday afternoon at Louisville Slugger Field.

The Indians got on the board in the top of the second inning when RF Brandon Boggs drew a two-out walk and then scored on a triple down the left field line by newcomer C Jose Morales, his first hit with the Tribe. A diving attempt by Bats LF Danny Dorn came up short, allowing both Boggs and Morales to cruise around the bases.

Indianapolis added a would-be insurance run in the top of the third, when CF Starling Marte led off with a triple to right field and scored when 2B Anderson Hernandez reached on an error. For the next 6.1 innings, it appeared as though that was all the Indians would need to get the win.

Owens (7.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K) was great in seven innings of work, recording five strikeouts and allowing only one Bats baserunner to reach third base. Lefty reliever Slaten ( 1.0 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 0 K) took over for Owens in the eighth inning, allowing just a lone hit while lowering his season ERA to a miniscule 0.96.

RHP Tim Wood (L, 0.2 IP, 3 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 0 BB, 1 K) came on to pitch the ninth inning, looking to pick up his second save of 2012. Louisville CF Denis Phipps had other ideas, however, and singled to lead off the inning before moving to second on a groundout by Dorn. 1B Neftali Soto’s single to left put runners on the corners for Louisville, but Wood struck out hot-hitting SS Paul Janish and it appeared as though the Tribe might escape the inning unscathed.

If only that had been the third out. With two outs and runners on the corners, Bats PH Daryl Jones hit a walkoff three-run home run to right-center field on the first pitch he saw from Wood to give Louisville the 3-2 victory. The walkoff blast by Jones handed Wood his second blown save and third loss of the season.

Louisville reliever Josh Judy (0.1 IP) picked up the victory for the Bats despite facing just one batter in the top of the ninth.  Former Tribe hurler Sean Gallagher (5.1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 4 K) started the game for the Bats, but did not receive a decision despite surrendering just two tallies.

The Indians and Bats wrap up the Louisville portion of their current five-game home-and-home series with game three on Monday night at Louisville Slugger Stadium. First pitch is slated for 6:35 p.m. LHP Justin Wilson (1-2, 3.57) is expected to take the bump for Indianapolis while Louisville is projected to counter with RHP Chad Reineke (0-0, 6.32)

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