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Mud Hens

Kirkland hits 2 homers in Mud Hens' win over Indianapolis

  • Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis-3

    The Mud Hens Michael Holliman tries to make the tag as Indy s Nyjer Morgan steals second base during the fourth inning.

    Jeremy Wadsworth / The Blade
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  • Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis

    Hens third baseman Kody Kirkland begins his second home run trot of the game in the fifth inning last night at Fifth Third Field. They were his first homers of the season for Toledo.

    Jeremy Wadsworth / The Blade
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  • Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis-2

Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis

Hens third baseman Kody Kirkland begins his second home run trot of the game in the fifth inning last night at Fifth Third Field. They were his first homers of the season for Toledo.

Jeremy Wadsworth / The Blade
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There are several adjectives that could be used to describe the Mud Hens' a 5-3 victory over Indianapolis at Fifth Third Field last night.

"Sloppy" certainly qualifies, since the Hens made two errors and several other misplays that helped the Indians score their runs.

"Contentious" would work, since there also were several arguments with umpires and an ejection of Toledo shortstop Derek

Wathan.

But "noteworthy" probably would be the best choice, since it took some notable performances to claim the victory. The Mud Hens got a pair of home runs by Kody Kirkland, not to mention three runs manufactured by some good situational hitting.

That and a strong pitching performance by Chris Lambert and Clay Rapada helped the Hens win for the second straight game.

Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis-2

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"We actually played through our mistakes," Parrish said. "We gave up some runs after making errors we shouldn't have made. A couple of the arguments happened because we misplayed plays."

Kirkland was one of the heroes after slamming long home runs in the second and fourth off Indianapolis starter Ross Ohlendorf. Despite playing third base in place of Mike Hessman, who has joined the U.S. Olympic team, Kirkland said he's not trying to be another Hessman.

"I'm not a guy who's going to hit 32 home runs like Hessman," Kirkland said. "Those are some big shoes to fill. I'm just going to go out there, play hard, and try to play my game."

The Mud Hens used a similar formula to score single runs in the first and third innings. Both times Clete Thomas got on base, then stole second before coming home on two-out doubles by Timo Perez.

"Base hit, steal base, move a guy over, bring him in," Parrish said.

"And we got two two-out hits, and that has been missing lately."

That was enough offense for Lambert, who retired the first nine Indianapolis batters he faced before surrendering a run in the fourth - a run that comes with an asterisk. Nyjer Morgan led off with a walk, then stole second before Lambert struck out Andrew McCutchen and coaxed Neil Walker to lift a fly to deep center.

Kirkland-hits-2-homers-in-Mud-Hens-win-over-Indianapolis-3

The Mud Hens Michael Holliman tries to make the tag as Indy s Nyjer Morgan steals second base during the fourth inning.

Jeremy Wadsworth / The Blade
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Thomas was in position to make the catch, but he dropped the ball, allowing Morgan to take third and Walker to reach second. Morgan scored on a single by Ryan Mulhern, but Lambert escaped further damage by getting Luis Ordaz to hit into a double play.

Defensive struggles also led to a two-run Indians rally in the seventh. Mulhern led off with a liner to shortstop that bounced off Wathan's glove for an error, and Luis Ordaz doubled Mulhern to third.

Josh Wilson hit a sinking liner to right that went under Brent Clevlen's glove for a double that scored Mulhern and moved Ordaz to third. Ordaz scored on a sacrifice fly by Matt Kata.

Rapada set down Indianapolis in the eighth, but not without controversy.

With one out McCutchen walked, but Rapada picked McCutchen off first. McCutchen ran to second, and Jeff Larish threw to Wathan as McCutchen ran by - and umpire David Uyl called McCutchen safe.

Wathan later was ejected by another umpire, David

Rackley. Wathan declined comment on the ejection by Rackley, who an inning earlier had called Wathan's long fly into the Roost a fair ball, a call that later was reversed.

Rapada worked a 1-2-3 ninth to earn his first save.

Contact John Wagner at:

jwagner@theblade.com

or 419-724-6481.

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