McAllister pitches Clippers to another win
The win streak continues to be alive and well as the Clippers bested the Gwinnett Braves Thursday 2-0. It is the eighth straight win for the Clippers and their 11th win in their last 14 contests. They are now 11 games over .500, 16-5 overall to be exact. That mark is good for the best record in the International League.
It was the starting pitchers, Zach Mccalister of the Clippers and Braves left hander Mike Minor, dominating early. Both pitchers combined for eight strikeouts while only giving up 4 hits through five innings. The offense would come to life in the top of the sixth for the clippers. Clippers catcher Paul Phillips beat it out for an infield hit. Jason Kipnis then sacrificed Phillips over second on a bunt. Two batters later, Lonnie Chisenhall stepped to the plate with two outs and a runner on second. He fouled off a 1-2 pitch that popped out of the glove of Braves catcher J.C. Boscan. Chisenhall lived to see another pitch and he took advantage of the given opoortunity. Finally there were runs put up on the scoreboard as the Clippers took a 2-0 lead over the Braves on Chisenhall’s two-run shot in the top of the 6th.
In the bottom half of the sixth, the Braves threatened to do some offensive damage of their own. Gwinnett led off the inning with singles by Jose Constanza and Jordan Schaefer. McCalister then struck out Matt Young and induced a groundball by Mauro Gomez to end the Braves threat. The Clippers had an opportunity to add to their lead with two out singles by Jordan Brown and Wes Hodges in the top of the 7th. However, Paul Phillips was not able to come through for the Clippers. He struck out swinging to end the inning. Just like the bottom of the 6th, the Braves threatened the Clippers lead. The leadoff batter Diory Hernandez led off the inning with an infield hit, but Mccalister got a little help from his defense as they turned a double play to end the inning.
In the eighth, it was the same story for the Braves as they again got the lead-off hitter on with a Dan Nelson walk. Jensen Lewis, who came on for Mcalister in the 8th, then struck out J.C. Boscan, got Constanza to fly out to center, and induced an inning ending groundout by Jordan Scaefer to first to retire the side.
The Braves would stage one last rally in the ninth. Matt Young and Mauro Gomez both singled to begin the inning. Diory Hernandez would then break up the shutout with looper that found a spot in the outfield for an rbi single to make it 2-1. Braves designated hitter Stefan Gartrell would then sacrifice the runners over with a bunt. After an intentional walk to shortstop Ed Lucas, the bases were loaded with one out. Josh Judy needed a groundball in the worst way and he got it for a game ending double play.
The Clippers will go for the sweep over the Braves on Friday. Columbus will send Corey Klubler to the hill, looking for his first win of the season. He will oppose Braves starter Rodrigo Lopez, who’s looking for his 5th win of the season.