Dragons 3, West Michigan 2
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West Michigan (R-H-E): 2-6-1
Dayton (R-H-E): 3-9-0
WP: Jimmy Moran (1-0)
LP: Dan Bennett (0-1)
HR: Dayton: None
HR: West Michigan: Curt Casali (1st, 0 on base in 9th inning)
Dayton, Ohio-Nick O'Shea's base hit to center field brought in Juan Perez from second base with the winning run with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Dayton Dragons to a 3-2 comeback victory over the West Michigan Whitecaps. A crowd of 8,496 saw the Dragons score two runs in the bottom of the ninth for the win as they improved to 2-0 on the season.
The game was tied at 1-1 going to the ninth inning. West Michigan's Curt Casali blasted a two-out solo home run in the top of the inning to give the Whitecaps a 2-1 lead. Casali's homer was the first run in the game since Dayton tied the score with a run in the bottom of the second.
In the bottom of the ninth, Dayton's Juan Silva led off with a five-pitch walk. Silva raced to third on Steve Selsky's single to right. Perez then lined a single to right to bring in Silva to tie the game, but Selsky was thrown out attempting to advance to third for the first out of the inning. Perez went to second base on the throw. O'Shea fell behind in the count 0-2 before delivering a line drive through the middle. West Michigan center fielder Chad Wright played the ball on the bounce and fired home as Perez rounded third. Perez slid home just before he was tagged by Casali to give the Dragons the winning run.
West Michigan scored in the top of the first inning to take a 1-0 lead against Dragons starter Radhames Quezada. Aaron Westlake's run-scoring single with one out brought in Eugenio Suarez from third base with the Whitecaps first run of the season.
The Dragons tied the game in the second when Sean Buckley singled to start the inning and eventually scored on a base hit by Selsky to make it 1-1 and set the stage for the exciting finish.
Quezada went the first four innings for the Dragons, allowing one run on three hits with three walks and three strikeouts. Carlos Gonzalez pitched a scoreless fifth inning and James Allen worked the next three innings, retiring nine of the 10 batters he faced. Jimmy Moran allowed the homer to Casali in the top of the ninth but was credited with the win.
The Dragons collected nine hits. Buckley, Selsky, and Ryan Wright each had two.
The Dragons host the Whitecaps in the series finale on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. at Fifth Third Field as Dayton tries for a series sweep. Tanner Robles, who went 7-9 with a 5.40 earned run average in 20 starts for the Dragons in 2012, will make the start for Dayton. Kyle Ryan, also a returning Midwest League player from 2011, will start for West Michigan. He went 6-10 with a 3.15 ERA for the Whitecaps last year. The Dragons do not play on Sunday. They open a three-game series against the Lansing Lugnuts on Monday at 7:00 p.m. at Fifth Third Field.
Notes: Selsky is 5 for 8 after two games, batting .625...Dragons pitchers have posted a 1.00 earned run average over the first two games, allowing just two runs in 18 innings. Dragons pitchers have limited West Michigan to a combined batting average of .156.