LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Jeff Larish's entertaining season ended one inning shy of baseball immortality as his bid to play all nine positions in the regular season finale was cut short without him strapping on the catcher's gear in the Indianapolis Indians 2-0 win over the Louisville Bats at Louisville Slugger Field.
Larish started the game in left field and by the end of the third inning had played all three outfield positions, taking center in the second and right in the third. Larish only saw one defensive chance in the outfield, catching a flyout to center in the second inning.
Moving to the infield, Larish saw no chances at third base in the sixth inning but did catch a lineout at shortstop in the fifth. As the second baseman in the sixth, Larish covered first base on a sacrifice bunt fielded by 1B Matt Hague.
Larish then moved to first base to start the seventh inning, not factoring into the first two outs of the inning. The game then took an unexpected and highly entertaining turn when Larish went to the mound and RHP Jose Diaz -- all 6-4, 316 pounds -- went to play second base.
The multi-positional Larish walked the first Bats batter he faced but then induced a popout to shortstop to end the inning. He wasn't the first Indians position player to see the mound this season: OF Brandon Boggs tossed a perfect inning of relief against the Pawtucket Red Sox on June 5.
With Larish having escaped the seventh unscathed, Diaz led off the top of the eighth inning and made it all the way to second on a throwing error. Then, Diaz -- again, 6-4 and 316 pounds -- stole third base before scoring on a single by SS/3B/SS Chase d'Arnaud to put the Indians ahead 2-0.
After a walk to 2B/LF Anderson Hernandez put runners on first and second and 3B/2B/3B/2B/1B Hector Luna had worked an 0-2 count, the game was called due to heavy rain, the second straight rain-shortened contest in the series.
After rehabbing major league RHP Chad Qualls (1.0 IP, 3 K) struck out the side in the first inning, RHP Daniel McCutchen (2.0 IP, 1 H, 2 K) was awarded the win on two scoreless innings of relief. LHP Jo-Jo Reyes (1.0 IP, 2 K), RHP Duke Welker (1.0 IP, 1 H) and RHP Logan Kensing (1.0 IP, 1 H) also contributed scoreless innings before Diaz (0.2 IP, 1 K) and Larish (0.1 IP, 1 BB) split the bottom of the seventh. For his effort, Larish was credited with a save.
The Indians had scored the first run of the game in the top of the first, when Hernandez scored on a double play. For allowing that run, Louisville RHP Tim Gustafson (4.0 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 K) took the loss.
The Bats wrapped up their 2012 season with a 51-93 record, the most losses in franchise history. Indianapolis, meanwhile, finishes the regular season 89-55, the best record for the Tribe in the Victory Field era.
The Indians will begin the first round of the playoffs on Wednesday night at Victory Field, facing off against the Charlotte Knights at 7:05 p.m.
The contest will be televised on HTSN (Hometown Sports and News), available via cable or over-the-air on digital channel 6.2. The game also will be carried on WNDE 1260 AM-WFBQ-HD2, WNDE.com and via iheartradio, a mobile application for iPhone, Blackberry and Android phones with Howard Kellman and Will Flemming on the call. The pre-game show begins at 6:45 p.m.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.