Lake County holds onto early lead for 4-3 victory
BOWLING GREEN, KY- The Lake County Captains (3-1, 26-45) took advantage of two early Bowling Green errors to build an early lead and withheld a rally by the Bowling Green Hot Rods (3-1, 41-31) to win the series opener on Sunday evening 4-3.
Lake County scored the first run of the game in the third inning. Second baseman Yhoxian Medina and third baseman Erik Gonzalez hit back-to-back singles with two outs. Medina scored when Hot Rods third baseman Leonardo Reginatto could not field a groundball from shortstop Dorssys Paulino.
Another Bowling Green fielding error led to a run in the fourth inning. First baseman Joe Sever singled, moved to second on a walk and crossed the plate on a error by first baseman Patrick Leonard.
Reinaldo Lopez started the game for Bowling Green and lasted four and two-thirds innings. He gave up two unearned runs on three hits, earning the loss. He walked two and struck out five before reliever Matthew Spann entered.
Lake County built a 3-0 lead by the end of the fifth inning. Catcher Jeremy Lucas doubled, advanced on a Spann wild pitch and scored on a sacrifice fly by designated hitter Leo Castillo.
Captains’ starter Jake Sisco threw five innings of shutout ball to pick up his fourth win of 2013. Sisco scattered six hits and two walks to stall the Hot Rods.
Jack Wagoner entered for Lake County and was roughed up for two runs in the sixth. A RBI double by left fielder Marty Gantt and a bases-loaded walk by shortstop Brandon Martin accounted for the runs. Manager Scooter Tucker hooked Wagoner with the bags full and two outs and summoned DJ Brown, who killed the rally with a groundout.
Wagoner was charged with two runs on two hits and two walks in two-thirds of an inning.
Gonzalez laced his team-leading fifth triple down the right field line with one out in the seventh. Paulino plated Gonzalez with a RBI infield single to build a 4-2 lead at the seventh inning stretch.
The Hot Rods manufactured a run in the bottom of the eighth with a RBI single by right fielder Ryan Dunn.
Josh Martin entered the game for the ninth inning. Brown threw two and a third innings in relief with one run allowed on two hits.
Bowling Green’s bullpen of Spann and Marcus Jensen allowed two runs in four and a third innings.
Martin gave up a two-out single but closed out the final out to earn his first save of the year and his career.
Lake County was outhit 11-8 in the game. When outhit, the Captains are 7-35 against opponents. Gonzalez and Medina led the way with two hits each. The 4-6 hitters in the lineup had the other three hits.
The Captains and Hot Rods will play the middle game of the series Monday night. Lake County will send LHP Ryan Merritt (3-7, 4.21) to the mound to start the ballgame and BG will counter with RHP Jeff Ames (6-1, 4.27). First pitch will be at 8:05 PM.
Tyler, a sports management student at Lake Erie College, can be found on Twitter @tstotsky63.