(Eastlake, OH) - Alex Royalty held the Fort Wayne TinCaps (4-9, 26-55) to just one run on two hits across five innings pitched on Wednesday to lead the Lake County Captains (8-5, 48-34) to victory on Wednesday night. The Captains defeated Fort Wayne, 3-2, in front of a crowd of 6,210 at Classic Park.
Royalty got into hot water early, allowing back-to-back hits to begin the ballgame. Tucupita Marcano roped a single to left and Lee Solomon doubled to left to put runners on second and third with nobody out. Agustin Ruiz then lifted a sacrifice fly to centerfield that scored Marcano with the game's first run.
Royalty did not allow a hit during the rest of his stay on the hill. After walking Dwanya Williams-Sutton, Royalty escaped the first by striking out Justin Lopez and Michael Curry. He allowed four more baserunners on an error, two walks and a hit-batsman, but no TinCap registered a hit against Royalty after Solomon's double two batters into the game.
Lake County came back to tie the game in the third. Daniel Schneemann led off with a double and Ruben Cardenas singled with one out to put men on the corners. Cardenas later took off for second as TinCaps starter Ryan Weathers was picking off to first. First baseman Luis Almanzar's throw to second base misfired and the ball skipped into left field, allowing Schneemann to trot home with the tying run.
The Captains grabbed the lead in the fourth. Hosea Nelson hit a one-out triple to right-centerfield. Two batters later, Makesiondon Kelkboom punched a single into shallow right-center to score Nelson and give the Captains a 2-1 lead. Lake County added an insurance run the following inning when Cardenas doubled off the left-centerfield wall, moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Jose Fermin and scored on a fielder's choice ground out by Josh Rolette .
Captains lefty Kellen Rholl took over for Royalty in the sixth and stymied Fort Wayne in the sixth and seventh. The southpaw struck out five of the six batters he faced and only allowed one hit, a one-out single in the fourth by Curry. In the eighth, however, a Captains error allowed the TinCaps to scratch across a run and cut Lake County's lead to 3-2. Williams-Sutton led off with a single and Lopez followed with a single to center. Nelson charged in to field the base hit, but the ball skipped off of his glove, allowing Williams-Sutton to take third. Two batters later, Juan Fernandez singled home Williams-Sutton on a line drive to left.
Manuel Alvarez closed the door in the ninth to seal the win and nail down his eighth save. Alvarez got Marcano to fly out to center, walked Solomon and then struck out both Ruiz and Williams-Sutton looking to end the game.
Royalty (4-4) earned the win. The right-hander struck out seven, walked two and held the TinCaps to one run on two hits over five innings.
Weathers (2-3) took the loss. The TinCaps' southpaw worked 4.2 innings and surrendered three runs, two earned, on seven hits. He struck out four, walked two and hit one batter.
The Captains and TinCaps split their two games at Classic Park and their series now shifts to Fort Wayne, IN for a pair of games on Thursday and Friday. First pitch on Thursday, Independence Day, is scheduled for 7:05 p.m. from Parkview Field.
Individual game tickets for all Captains games are on sale at the Classic Park box office, online at captainsbaseball.com and by phone at 440-954-WINS (9467). Mini ticket plans for the 2019 season are still available for great prices complete with several exclusive benefits. Information can be found at the Captains website www.captainsbaseball.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.