Aeros lose third-straight, fall 5-2
Packer, defense struggle in early going
NEW BRITAIN – The Akron Aeros dropped their third-straight game on Wednesday with a 5-2 loss to the New Britain Rock Cats.
Lefty Matt Packer received the start for the Aeros and faltered in two innings, resulting in Packer's sixth loss of the season. Pat Dean manned the mound for the Rock Cats, resulting in Dean's sixth win of the year as he tossed 7.2 innings and allowed just two runs.
The Rock Cats scored in the second inning as designated hitterJosmil Pinto led off with a single and advanced to second on an error during by second baseman Ronny Rodriguez during a force attempt play. A wild pitch allowed both runners to move into scoring position before a pair of consecutive sacrifice fly scored both runners.
Three more Rock Cats crossed the dish in the fourth inning. Pinto returned with a ground ball to short and took second on a throwing error by shortstop Francisco Lindor. Catcher Dan Rohlfing followed with a walk but was retired at second on a force play before right fielder Dan Ortiz sent his 10th home run of the year deep to right. With two out, the Rock Cats laced a pair of back-to-back singles, but Packer settled in to record the final out and stop the damage.
With the 5-0 lead, Dean cruised through the Aeros' lineup until the sixth inning. Designated hitter Jose Ramirez and Lindor crafted a pair of singles before first baseman Jesus Aguilar hit a one-out double to score Ramirez. With Lindor on third, right fielder Carlos Moncrief tapped a ground out that scored Lindor, cutting the Rock Cats' lead to 5-2.
Reliever Enosil Tejeda entered the game in the seventh to replace Packer, ending Packer's final line at five innings pitched, surrendering five runs (three earned) on six hits, two walks and a trio of strikeouts. Tejeda tossed two scoreless innings before giving way to Trey Haley, who pitched a scoreless eighth.
The three-run lead was all Rock Cats' reliever Cole Johnson needed as he earned the save with 1.1 innings of work, yielding just one base runner as he slammed the door on the Aeros for the 5-2 win.
Jose Ramirez made his return to the Aeros' lineup from the 7-day disabled list. Ramirez suffered an ankle injury back on July 14.
Next, the Aeros and Rock Cats complete their three-game series with a 12:05 p.m. finale. Brett Brach (6-7, 5.04) is expected to start for the Aeros to counter New Britain righty D.J. Baxendale (3-4, 5.63).
Stephanie is a crime and general assignment reporter for The Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio. She’s an alumna of Cleveland State University with a degree in Journalism and Promotional Communication. You can follow her on Twitter @7thInningSteph.