Minor Matters: Three Earn Top Player Awards

Aaron Laffey

Three players from the Indians' minor-league system won weekly awards for their performances for the week of Aug. 13-19. At Triple-A Buffalo, left-hander Aaron Laffey earned International League pitcher of the week honors. At Class A Kinston, first baseman Matt Whitney was named player of the week in the Carolina League while teammate Frank Herrmann gained pitcher of the week honors.

Whitney hit .417 (10-for-24) with three doubles, four homers, nine runs and seven RBI for the week.

Since being promoted from Lake County, the 23-year-old is hitting .295 with 13 homers and 40 RBI in 45 games.

In 71 games with the Captains, he hit .307 with 16 homers and 64 RBI to earn the callup.

Overall, he's hitting .303 (140-for-462) with 29 doubles, 29 homers and 104 RBI.

Herrmann went 2-0 last week, allowing one earned run over 15 innings, walking only two and striking out 10.

He pitched seven innings, allowing five hits and one earned run while striking out six, as Kinston downed Salem, 6-1, last Monday. Five days later, the 23-year-old gave up only five hits and struck out four in an eight-inning complete game 12-0 win ove Frederick.

In 24 starts this season, the right-hander who played his college ball at Harvard, is 10-5 with a 4.10 ERA and 81 strikeouts.

Monday night for Kinston, Chris Gimenez (.274) hit his 19th homer in 71 games since being promoted from Lake County. In 101 games overall, he's batting .256 (89-for-348) with 25 homers and 60 RBI.

Laffey, who made his major-league debut with the Indians earlier this month, is now unbeaten in his last 13 appearances for Buffalo. Overall in the minor leagues this season, he is 9-3 with a 3.08 ERA with the Bisons and 13-4, 2.88 combined between Buffalo and Class AA Akron. Laffey went 2-0 with a 1.93 ERA in starts against Rochester and Ottawa. In 14 innings overall, he allowed 12 hits and four walks, striking out 13.

Against the Red Wings on Aug. 14, he gave up two runs and four hits over eight innings. Five days later, he allowed one run and eight hits over six innings to Ottawa.

Monday night, Cliff Lee (3.60 ERA) allowed two earned runs over five innings in his fifth start since being demoted by the Indians on July 27. The left-hander allowed five hits, walked four, and struck out five, but did not get the decision in a 5-3 loss to Ottawa.

Right-hander Scott Elarton (1.64 ERA) fanned three over two scoreless innings before Rich Rundles (2-3, 2.16 ERA) gave up two runs (one earned) over one inning and was the loser.

Ben Francisco (.325), also sent down to Buffalo by the Indians on July 27, hit his ninth homer for the Bisons.

Brian Barton (.288), Joe Inglett (.242), Shin-Soo Choo (.268) and Mike Rose (.250) all had two hits apiece for the Bisons, who had a four-game winning streak snapped and fell to 68-60 overall.

On Sunday, right-hander Adam Miller struck out the first two batters he faced and retired the side in order on just 11 pitches in his first outing since coming off the disabled list.

LHP Jeremy Sowers has posted a 1.99 ERA over his last six starts ... 1B Ryan Mulhern is hitting .304 (6th/IL) with 16 homers and 73 RBI.

Lake County and Class AA Akron were postponed by rain Monday night.

Mahoning Valley starter Joanniel Montero (2.81 ERA) pitched no-hit ball for six innings, but reliever James Brettl (2.93 ERA) gave up two runs and Vinnie Pestano (3.66 ERA) allowed one in the eighth in a 3-2 loss at Batavia. Montero walked one and struck out three.

Matt Brown (.267) had three of the Scrappers' six hits.

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