Captains can't hold lead, lose key game 6-5
MIDLAND – The Lake County Captains dropped the final showing of a four-game series against the Great Lakes Loons on Tuesday with a 6-5 loss, despite a three-run shot from Alex Lavisky.
Left-hander Elvis Aruajo took the bump for the Captains to face Great Lakes’ right-hander Raydel Sanchez (3-8, 4.61).
The Loons earned a pair in the second inning after a pair of back-to-back strikeouts to start the inning. With two out, catcher Michael Pericht drew a walk and scored as third baseman Jeffrey Hunt doubled to left. Centerfielder James Baldwin followed with a single to left to score Hunt, giving the Loons the 2-0 lead.
The Captains’ response came in the fourth as designated hitter Jordan Smith started the inning with a single to right. With one out, right fielder Bryson Myles singled to left to advance Smith before catcher Alex Lavisky stepped to the plate to send his 11th home run of the season deep over the left field wall to progress the Captains to the 3-2 advantage.
Lake County added one more in the form of another long ball in the fifth as second baseman Jose Ramirez led off the inning with a solo shot for his third of the year to boost the Captains lead to 4-2.
The Loons were not to be outdone in their half of the sixth inning as right fielder Joseph Winker homered to right to bring Great Lakes within one again.
Sanchez was pulled after six innings of work as he allowed a total of four runs on seven hits and a trio of walks. The starter was replaced with Geoff Brown, who tossed 2.1 innings of work for the Loons.
Right-hander Cody Penny replaced Araujo to start the eighth, ending Aruajo’s evening with a line of seven innings pitched, surrendering four runs on five hits and a pair of walks while striking out seven.
Penny was welcomed by second baseman Jesus Arredondo, who started the Great Lakes’ comeback with a walk and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt. With one out, Winker doubled deep to center to score Arredondo, and designated hitter O’Koyea Dickson followed with another double to plate Winker.
Daniel Coulombe entered the game to pitch for the Loons with one out in the ninth and the Captains couldn’t come through with the tying run in scoring position. Ramirez singled and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt, but Coulombe made quick work of Smith and Sabourin to strand the runner and secure the Loons with the 6-5 win.
Ramirez maintains his batting average at .345 as he racked up three hits on the night. Smith also strung together a trio of hits, settling his average at .317 on the season. Smith is presently ranked second in batting average for the Midwest League, though he presently has 110 more at-bats than the current leader.
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.