Clevinger Perfect, Plutko Promising, Almonte Ready, and More in Columbus Clipnotes
Bob Toth | On 02, Jul 2016
The Clippers have returned to their winning ways after some difficult times earlier in the month of June. They wrapped up the month strong, taking two of three in Columbus from the Norfolk Tides before sweeping the IronPigs on their home field in Lehigh Valley.
They opened a four-game weekend series in Pawtucket with a 6-4 loss on Thursday night, but bounced back with a 5-3 win on Friday night, despite rain delaying the game late. The win pushed the Clippers (44-38) into a one and a half game lead in the International League West Division over their rivals, the Indianapolis Indians, who were swept in a doubleheader in Toledo.
In other Clipnotes:
CLIPPERS HEADING TO CHARLOTTE FOR ALL-STAR GAME
The International League announced earlier in the week that three members of the Clippers roster would be heading to Charlotte in less than two weeks to participate in the 2016 Triple-A All-Star Game.
CLEVINGER REMAINS PERFECT
Clevinger followed up the announcement of his All-Star nod by throwing another gem on the mound for the Clippers in a win over Lehigh Valley on Wednesday. He allowed one run on six hits over six innings, walking one and striking out six.
Over his last ten starts, he is 7-0 with a 2.26 ERA, firing 60 strikeouts in 55 2/3 innings. Four times he has left the game without being charged with an earned run in that span. For the year, he remains perfect at 8-0 with a 2.70 ERA and 1.19 WHIP over 13 starts, including one complete game. He has struck out a team-leading 76 batters in 70 innings.
PLUTKO SHOWING PROMISE AT AAA
Right-handed starter Adam Plutko made his third start of his career at the Triple-A level on Tuesday and had his best outing yet, improving to 2-1 on the season for the Clippers.
He worked seven scoreless innings, striking out five IronPigs batters while allowing just three hits and a walk. In three outings for Columbus, he has a 1.93 ERA and 1.13 WHIP. He has allowed 12 hits and nine walks in 18 2/3 innings while striking out eleven batters. His lone loss came via a 2-0 shutout against Rochester.
Prior to his promotion, the 24-year-old was 3-3 in 13 starts for the Akron RubberDucks, posting a 3.27 ERA and 1.06 WHIP while walking just 12 batters in 71 2/3 innings.
ALMONTE LOOKS READY FOR ACTION
Outfielder Abraham Almonte hit in all six of his games to wrap up June while beginning his preparation to return to the Indians roster from his 80-game PED suspension.
After homering in his debut on June 22, he had back-to-back two-hit games against Norfolk and two more hits on Monday against Lehigh Valley. He was 1-for-4 on Tuesday against the IronPigs before going 3-for-5 with three singles against Pawtucket in their series opener with the PawSox on Thursday.
He extended his hitting streak to seven straight with a single in the ninth inning of Columbus’ 5-4 win on Friday.
AGUILAR FINDS THE LONG BALL
First baseman Jesus Aguilar has tapped into his power over the final ten games of June, as he hit three home runs in that stretch while driving in eleven runs.
The year as a whole has been somewhat a struggle for Aguilar, who was hitting .219 with a .303 on-base percentage heading into play Friday with 12 doubles, 16 homers, and 47 RBI. He has hit just .188 against left-handers and .178 away from Huntington Park in Columbus. The 26-year-old, who has played parts of the last two seasons with the parent Cleveland Indians, is in his ninth season with the organization.
DIAZ WITH A SOLID JUNE
Yandy Diaz hit .254 with a .310 OBP in his first 17 games with the Clippers after joining the club in May after a promotion from Double-A Akron.
In 28 games in June, he was on fire, hitting .343 for the month with a .424 OBP, hitting two homers and driving in eleven runs. He had a nine-game hitting streak in the middle of the month and ended June with a seven-game streak, one that ended on Friday with an 0-for-3 at the plate while playing right field.
He was hitting .309 with the Clippers and .301 for the minor league season prior to Friday’s game.
MERRITT TO DL, DETWILER INACTIVE
Merritt took the loss on Sunday, giving up four runs (three earned) on six hits in three and one-third innings. He was coming off of his worst start of the year on June 21, when he allowed eight runs on 12 hits in six innings and did not retire a batter via strikeout. With the loss this week, his record for the year dropped to 4-7 and his ERA increased to 4.23.
Myles was hitting .206 for the Clippers this season through 27 games, heading into Friday night’s action across the minor leagues. In 36 games for Akron, he has hit .228 with six doubles, a triple, six homers, and has driven in 16 runs.
The Clippers also placed left-handed pitcher Ross Detwiler on the temporarily inactive list on Thursday. He is 2-4 in eleven starts for Columbus with a 4.72 ERA after being designated for assignment by the Indians at the end of April.