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Captains win slugfest over Dayton

September 9, 2021

(Eastlake, OH) – The Lake County Captains (60-51) hammered a season-high five home runs in a 9-8 win over the Dayton Dragons (57-54) on Thursday night at Classic Park.

(Eastlake, OH) – The Lake County Captains (60-51) hammered a season-high five home runs in a 9-8 win over the Dayton Dragons (57-54) on Thursday night at Classic Park.

Dayton jumped out to a 3-0 lead before Captains’ starter Xzavion Curry could record an out. Jacob Hurtubise led off with a first pitch single to right field. Matt McClain followed with a soft ground ball up the middle that was fielded by Lake County shortstop José Tena but Aaron Bracho’s foot was not on the second base bag on Tena’s flip to second and McClain was credited with an infield single. With two on and nobody out Ivan Johnson blasted a three-run home run down the right field line to put Dayton in front.

J**ohnathan Rodríguez** put the Captains on the scoreboard in the bottom of the second inning with a line drive home run that snuck over the wall down the right field line to make the score 3-1, Dayton.

The Captains jumped in front with two monster home runs in the fourth. Jhonkensy Noel slammed a leadoff homer to pull the Captains within one run. After Dayton starter Bryce Bonnin walked Joe Naranjo, Mike Amditis launched a two-run shot to the back of the left field bleachers. Amditis, making his first start since July 10 after a stint on the Injured List, jolted the Captains to a 4-3 lead.

Another long ball knotted the score in the top of the fifth for Dayton. With two outs and nobody on, Allan Cerda battled through an eight-run at-bat before hammering a Nathan Ocker curveball into the left field bleachers. The homer tied the score at 4-4.

Q**uentin Holmes** put the Captains back on top with a big fly of his own. Leading off the bottom of the fifth, Holmes launched a fly ball over the left-center field wall. His first homer since June 11 gave the Captains a 5-4 lead. After the homer, lefty Andy Fisher came in to relieve Bonnin. The southpaw walked Julian Escobedo. Tena followed with a single to put men on the corners and Noel pulled an RBI single through the left side to give the Captains a 6-4 advantage.

The Dragons pulled within one run in the top of the sixth. Jonathan WIllems led off with a single and Reyny Reyes reached on an error when Rodríguez dropped a fly ball down the right field line. A one-out walk to McLain loaded the bases and Johnson lined a single to left that scored Willems. The Captains’ lead shrunk to 6-5, but Ocker got the next two men to leave the bases loaded.

Noel started the bottom of the seventh for the Captains with a line drive single to left field, just over the head of the leaping shortstop Johnson. Naranjo followed with a double down the right field line to put two in scoring position with nobody out for the Captains. After a pop out to second base, Rodriguez stepped up and blasted his second home run of the night for a three-run shot to right field to extend the Captains lead to 9-5.

The Dragons answered right back in the top of the eighth. Reyny Reyes and Hurtubise both singled to reach base with nobody out. A walk to McClain loaded the bases. Captains reliever

Jared Janczak let loose a wild pitch which brought home Reyes from third, and the throw home from Amditis escaped Janczak rolling up the third base line. Hurtubise raced home on the error all the way from second to make the score 9-7, Captains. McClain reached second on the wild pitch, but he moved to third on a passed ball during the plate appearance to Johnson. Still with no outs Johnson walked to put runners on the corners. A sacrifice fly off the bat off James Free brought in McClain to cut the Captains lead to one run, but Eric Mock recorded the final three outs of the inning to keep the score 9-8, Captains.

Mock (1) continued in the ninth inning by striking out the side to earn the save for Lake County. He tossed the final two innings with three strikeouts.

Ocker (5-0) earned the win out of the Lake County bullpen. He allowed two runs, one earned, over 2.1 innings on two walks and four strikeouts.

Bryce Bonnin (0-2) took the loss on the mound for Dayton. He allowed five runs on four home runs over four innings. Bonnin struck out eight but walked one.

H**unter Gaddis** is scheduled to take the mound on Friday for Lake County. First pitch between the Captains and Dragons is set for 6:35 p.m. at Classic Park.

A**bout the Captains**

The Lake County Captains are the High-A affiliate of the Cleveland Indians. For more information, visit the Captains’ website at, Facebook page at, Twitter @LCCaptains and Instagram @LCCaptains. Fans can also get the latest Captains news and offers by signing up for the Captains’ newsletter, The Anchor.