DAYTON, OH - The Dayton Dragons scored twice in the bottom of the first inning Monday night and kept the visiting Great Lakes Loons off the scoreboard in a 2-0 shutout victory.
With the win, the Dragons are now 1 ½ ahead of the Loons in the Midwest League Eastern Division playoff race. Bowling Green, winners today over Fort Wayne, is tied with Great Lakes.
With two outs and none on, Dayton put together three consecutive hits to score twice in the first against Loons starter Zachary Bird. Robert Ramirez tripled on a ball nearly caught by a diving Devan Ahart in left field. Phillip Ervin followed with an RBI single. After Ervin stole second, Tanner Rahier drove him in with a single to center field.
Bird (6-16) held the Dragons scoreless in innings two through five and tied a career high with nine strikeouts but was charged with his 16th loss of the season, tops in the Midwest League.
Jordan Hershiser worked two scoreless relief innings. Jacob Rhame followed and worked a 1-2-3 eighth inning, his 30th consecutive scoreless inning.
Dayton starter Nick Travieso (13-5) notched his league-best 13th victory, holding the Loons scoreless in six innings. Nolan Becker, Evan Mitchell and Alejandro Chacin worked one scoreless inning each to finish off the game. Chacin was credited with his 20th save of the season. The Dayton pitching staff limited the Loons to just four hits, all singles. Ramirez and Ervin finished with two hit each.
Right-hander John Richy (0-0, 1.29 ERA) is scheduled to start for the Loons against the Dragons' righty Jackson Stephens (2-5, 4.21) in the final game of the series Tuesday night at 7 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN 100.9-FM.
The Great Lakes Loons are an eighth-year Single-A partner of the Los Angeles Dodgers. For tickets and more information about the Loons, visit Loons.com, or call 989-837-BALL.