Lake County wins thriller in 15 innings
EASTLAKE, OH- The Lake County Captains withstood a late inning rally by the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and walked off in the 15th inning Friday night with a 7-6 win. The game was a long one as it lasted a total of 4:22.
Centerfielder Luigi Rodriguez got thing stated after he walked with two outs in the first inning. Rodriguez then stole second, his 16th steal of the season. Rightfielder Jordan Smith scored Rodriguez with a groundball past the third baseman to give Lake County a 1-0 lead with his 37th RBI of the year.
Wisconsin tied the ballgame in the top of the fifth inning. Designated hitter Tyler Roberts hit his fourth homerun of the year, a solo shot to the left field bleachers.
On the first pitch of the bottom of the fifth inning, designated hitter Patric Tolentino smashed a solo homerun deep to left field. Third baseman Todd Hankins reached on a fielding error by the shortstop Yadiel Rivera. Hankins would then advance to second with his team-leading 20th stolen base. After two flyouts, shortstop Francisco Lindor lined a double to left field, scoring Hankins.
Starter Mason Radeke came out of the game after five innings of work. He allowed three hits and one run. The Roberts’ homerun accounted for the only run he allowed. He walked one and struck out eight, which tied a season high. Francisco Valera relieved Radeke in the sixth.
Lake County scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth. First baseman Jerrud Sabourin singled with one out in the inning. Sabourin moved to second on a wild pitch by starter Matt Miller. Tolentino doubled to score Sabourin. Hankins followed with a RBI- double of his own, plating Tolentino. Miller came out of the game and was replaced by reliever Stosh Wawrzasek. Hankins would steal another base in the inning but could not score as the next batter flew out to end the inning.
Miller allowed five runs (four earned) on seven hits in 5 and 2/3 innings. He walked three and struck out three. Wawrazasek threw four scoreless innings in relief.
Valera allowed a run in the seventh inning. Rivera walked to lead off the inning. Valera threw a wild pitch to the backstop, allowing Rivera to move to third. Rivera scored on Valera’s second wild pitch of the game.
Rob Nixon replaced Valera in the eighth inning. Valera allowed one run on one hit in two innings. He issued two base-on-balls and recorded two strikeouts.
Nixon gave up a leadoff homerun to rightfielder Max Walla in the eighth, his third round tripper of the year.
Wisconsin rallied in the ninth inning to tie the game. Rivera walked for the second time in the game. A double by Roberts advanced Rivera to third. Manager Matt Erickson used Lance Roenicke to pinch run for Roberts. Second baseman Adrian Williams grounded out to first, bringing home Rivera. Walla struck again with a RBI single to tie the game at five.
Manuel Carmona replaced Nixon to start the twelfth inning. Carmona gave up Walla’s second homerun of the game to Wisconsin a 6-5 lead. Nixon blew the save, allowing three runs on four hits.
Lake County rallied to tie in the bottom half of the frame. Lindor reached on an error by Rivera. Rodriguez moved the runner over with a sacrifice bunt. Smith scored Lindor with a RBI single to tie the game again. Lake County loaded the bases with two outs but could not push the winning run across.
Lake County walked off in the bottom of the fifteenth inning. Second baseman Jose Ramirez doubled on a bloop shot to center field. Reliever Stephen Peterson (2-2, 4.01) intentionally walked Lindor. A passed ball then moved the runners to second and third. Rodriguez was intentionally walked to load the bases. Wisconsin employed a five infielder shift for Smith, who hit a ball to shallow left field, allowing Ramirez to score the winning run.
Carmona allowed one run on two hits in two innings. Antwonie Hubbard and Kyle Petter (1-0, 0.96) each threw scoreless innings. Petter picked up the win.
Manager Dave Wallace spoke about on the thriller on the field. “It makes sleeping a lot easier tonight, I am proud of the guys. They were physically and mentally strong tonight.”
Jordan Smith had a 3-6 game with three RBI’s including the game-tying and winning RBI. “I am not sure of what pitch, I honestly don’t know. It [the sacrifice fly] was just deep enough for mini-me [Jose Ramirez] to score.”
Lake County pounded out 11 hits, with each batter reaching base at least once. Tolentino added two hits and two RBI’s of his own.
Lake County will continue the homestand with the Beloit Snappers coming to town. LHP Elvis Araujo (3-7, 4.86) will start for Lake County against LHP David Hurlbut (3-2, 2.04) for Beloit. First pitch on Saturday night is set for 7:00 PM.
Tyler, a sports management student at Lake Erie College, can be found on Twitter @tstotsky63.