Crushers fall short in late comeback attempt, 3-2
A late comeback fell just short as Lake Erie scored a run in the eighth inning, but fell to Traverse City 3-2.
Starter Dave Middendorf pitched a compete game with all three runs earned on five hits. Falling behind 2-0 in the first, Middendorf settled in but Lake Erie's offense could not get on track.
Middendorf moves to 5-3 on the season with an impressive 2.78 ERA in 58.1 innings pitched this season.
Max Casper kept the Crushers in the game early on with a sacrifice fly that scored Daniel Bowman in the second inning. The Crushers' bats went silent after that for several innings while leaving multiple runners on base.
Three times the Crushers left runners on third and could not get the run across. In the third inning, the Crushers had the bases loaded with one out, but Emmanuel Quiles grounded into an inning-ending double play.
Then in the seventh, Max Casper got to third on an error and down 3-1 with two outs, but the red-hot Anderson Hidalgo could not come through.
An inning later in the eighth, Daniel Bowman struck to put the Crushers down one on a triple that scored Russell Moldenhauer.
Quiles came up next with Bowman on third and hit a fly ball to right. The ball was tracked down by the Beach Bum's Carlo Testa as Moldenhauer attempted to tag up from third, but a perfect throw caught Moldenhauer to end the eight.
In the ninth, Ricardo Lizcano led off with a single, but the bottom of the order could not get him home.
Lake Erie is now 17-20 on the season and have fallen behind to 6.5 games out of first place.
The Crushers will take the field at 5:05 to take one away from Traverse City.