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Published: Sunday, 7/1/2012

Hens win as Crosby shuts down Clippers

Left-hander helps Toledo snap 3-game skid

BLADE STAFF

COLUMBUS -- The Mud Hens blew open a pitchers' duel with a five-run eighth inning to snap a three-game losing streak by beating the Clippers 8-1.

The support was all Casey Crosby needed as he baffled the Columbus batters all night, limiting the Clippers to a single hit in seven innings while striking out four and throwing 99 pitches on a night when the game-time temperature hovered near 90 degrees.

Minor league journeyman John Lindsey blasted his first home run with the Mud Hens in the second inning, giving Toledo a 1-0 lead. It was all the offense Toledo could generate until the eighth inning off of Clippers starting pitcher Corey Kluber, who limited the Hens to two more singles until the decisive eighth inning.

In the eighth, Rob Brantly, Audy Ciriaco, and Argenis Diaz led off the inning with singles, with Diaz's hit plating Brantly. Justin Henry followed with a sacrifice fly. After Kluber left the game later in the inning, Lindsey had another big hit, blasting a double to score three more runs.

The Mud Hens tacked on two more runs in the ninth inning when Ben Guez singled to drive in Brantly and Diaz.

That was way more offense than Crosby needed. The left-hander carried a no-hitter through five innings. Matt Pagnozzi broke that up when he led off the sixth inning with a single to left, but Crosby shook that off and induced the next batter, Ryan Rohlinger, to ground into a double play.

Travis Hafner, who is in Columbus rehabbing a knee injury, hit a sacrifice fly in the ninth to provide the Clippers with their only run. He was 0-3.

Indians manager Manny Acta said Saturday that Hafner will be evaluated after the series with the Hens and could be back with the Tribe when the team returns to Cleveland on Monday to face the Angels.

Kluber could also be on the verge of a call-up to Cleveland.

With the Indians' rotation struggling, the 26-year-old right-hander could soon get his shot. His record fell to 7-7, but he has a solid 3.84 ERA.



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