MIDLAND, MI – In the 60th game of the 2021 season, the Great Lakes Loons (32-28) defeated the Lansing Lugnuts (29-31) by a final score of 4-2 to end a six-game series at Dow Diamond. James Outman and Justin Yurchak began the Loons day with a pair of solo blasts
MIDLAND, MI – In the 60th game of the 2021 season, the Great Lakes Loons (32-28) defeated the Lansing Lugnuts (29-31) by a final score of 4-2 to end a six-game series at Dow Diamond. James Outman and Justin Yurchak began the Loons day with a pair of solo blasts in the bottom of the first inning, overcoming an early deficit from Shane Selman’s solo homer in the top of the first. Following Landon Knack’s third start, Cam Gibbens (W, 3-0), Mike Mokma and Zack Plunkett held the Lugnuts silent in 4 2/3 combined innings, not allowing a run or hit in the final innings.
Lansing’s Colin Peluse struck out five batters in his four-inning start, responsible for the Outman and Yurchak homeruns. Brandon Withers (L, 1-1) surrendered 2 runs on one hit in 2 1/3 innings of relief. Brock Whittlesey completed the final 1 2/3 innings in the Loons win, striking out one batter and giving up a Joe Vranesh single in the eighth.
Justin Yurchak recorded his 20th multi-hit game since the month of June, leading the Loons with a 2-for-4 day and his second Loons longball of the season. James Outman reached base twice in five trips to the plate, tallying his sixth homerun of the year. Outman’s Sunday homer moves him one shy of most career Loons homeruns, a record set by Kyle Russell’s 26.
For the first time in this series, Great Lakes overcame an early Lansing deficit. The Lugnuts reached the scoreboard first in five of the six games this week, holding the Loons to a 1-4 record when doing so in this series. Lansing was limited to finish 0-for-2 with runners in scoring position, leaving four men aboard. On top of the 4-2 Sunday win, Great Lakes ended 1-for-10 with runners at second and third, leaving nine runners aboard.
Returning from the injured list for his first series since June 23, Carson Taylor finished 4-for-10 in four games offensively. Taylor caught Schuemann attempting to steal second for the final out of the top of the fifth, and back-picked Jordan Diaz at first in the top of the sixth. Schuemann, who leads all of professional baseball with 34 steals, was caught stealing for just the second time this season.
Great Lakes broke free of a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the fifth after a leadoff base hit from Justin Yurchak on newly-inserted Brandon Withers. Taylor and Ward were consecutively retired, but the Loons found two-out life after Withers plunked Andy Pages and Leonel Valera by a pitch. A pitch from Withers connected with the helmet of Valera, who left Sunday’s game following the hit-by-pitch and was replaced by Deacon Liput. Yurchak would score on a Withers wild pitch with the bases loaded to break the 2-2 tie.
Despite Sunday’s win, Great Lakes fell in their first series, four games to two, since falling to the Dayton Dragons at Day Air Ballpark in the beginning of June. Coincidentally, the Loons begin the second half of the 2021 regular season with a 12-game road trip, the first trip coming as a six-game stop in Dayton. After the first 60 games, Dayton holds a three-game advantage over Great Lakes.
The Loons pack it up for their second 12-game trip of the season, and will commence a six-game series at Day Air Ballpark against the first-place Dayton Dragons on Tuesday, July 13. The Loons make their first trip of the season to Classic Park to challenge the Lake County Captains for the final leg of a 12-game trip, spanning from July 20-25. Great Lakes answers a 12-game road trip with a 12-game home stand at Dow Diamond, beginning with a six-game stretch against the West Michigan Whitecaps on July 27.
The Great Lakes Loons have been the Single-A partner of the Los Angeles Dodgers since the team’s inception in 2007. Dow Diamond serves as the team’s home and also houses the Michigan Baseball Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit public charity, and ESPN 100.9-FM. For tickets or information about the Loons, call 989-837-BALL or visit Loons.com.