Captains lose third straigth, 7-2
SOUTH BEND, IN-The South Bend Silver Hawks (25-23, 60-58) used a three run sixth inning to pull away from the Lake County Captains (25-23, 56-61) and fly to a 7-2 win on Saturday night. Lake County has lost three straight games and is now tied with South Bend for the last playoff spot.
Lake County drew first blood in the top of the fourth inning. After a single and two fielder’s choices, first baseman Jerrud Sabourin doubled to center field to score right fielder Jordan Smith.
South Bend battled right back with a two run fourth inning. Shortstop Raul Navarro led off with a walk. Following a flyout and a popout, third baseman Ryan Court plated Navarro with a RBI double to right field. Left fielder Kerry Jenkins stepped to the plate and lined a single to left field. Court scored from second to make it a 2-1 game after four.
The Captains tied the game at two in the top of the fifth. Designated hitter Jake Lowery doubled down the right field line to begin the inning. Second baseman Jose Ramirez drove home Lowery with a two-out single to right field.
The Silver Hawks regained the lead a few moments later. Second baseman Eric Groff hit his fourth homerun of the year, a one-out, solo shot to left field. South Bend held a 3-2 lead after five innings of play.
Captains’ starter Mason Radeke (5-6, 3.77) pitched five innings. Radeke allowed three runs on four hits, picking up his sixth loss. He walked one and struck out seven. Francisco Valera came into the game to pitch the sixth inning.
South Bend welcomed Valera to the game with three runs in the sixth. Right fielder Tom Belza singled and advanced to third on a double by Court. Jenkins plated Belza with a sacrifice fly to center field. Catcher Roidany Aguila doubled home Court from third base. Two batters later, Groff struck again with a RBI single to left field.
Left-hander Keith Hessler (2-1, 2.60) started the game for South Bend and picked up his second win of the year. He went six innings before giving way to right-handed reliever Alex Capaul. Hessler allowed two runs on six hits in six innings. He surrendered two walks and retired six batters via the strikeout.
With two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning, Court reached on a fielding error by third baseman Leonardo Castillo. Court stole second base, his fourth stolen base of the year. Jenkins scored Court for his third RBI of the night. Jenkins was thrown out attempting to advance to second, ending the inning. South Bend led 7-2 after eight innings.
Valera allowed four runs (three earned) on seven hits in two innings. Reliever Cody Penny pitched a perfect eighth inning with two strikeouts.
Capaul picked up his second save, pitching three scoreless innings. He allowed four hits and struck out three.
Lake County had ten hits on the evening. Ramirez accounted for four hits with a 4-5 game. Sabourin added two more hits to push his average to .304 on the year. He also has 53 RBI’s of the campaign.
South Bend and Lake County will continue a three game series on Sunday afternoon. LHP Andrew Barbosa (2-2, 3.94) will start for the Silver Hawks and the Captains will counter with LHP Elvis Araujo (5-9, 5.20). This is a rematch of last Tuesday’s game in Lake County. First pitch is set from 2:05 PM ET from Stanley Coveleski Regional Stadium.
Tyler, a sports management student at Lake Erie College, can be found on Twitter @tstotsky63.