EASTLAKE, OH - The Lansing Lugnuts (19-19, 51-56) blew leads of 3-0, 5-3 and 8-5, but recovered to defeat the Lake County Captains (20-18, 60-47) in ten innings, 10-8, on Wednesday afternoon at Classic Park.The game lasted four hours and 26 minutes, the Lugnuts' longest of the year, requiring 435
EASTLAKE, OH - The Lansing Lugnuts (19-19, 51-56) blew leads of 3-0, 5-3 and 8-5, but recovered to defeat the Lake County Captains (20-18, 60-47) in ten innings, 10-8, on Wednesday afternoon at Classic Park.
The game lasted four hours and 26 minutes, the Lugnuts' longest of the year, requiring 435 pitches from ten pitchers, five from each team.
The tie-breaking blow in the tenth came from Otto Lopez , an RBI single to left field off Kellen Rholl (Loss, 1-3) that brought in pinch-runner DJ Neal for a 9-8 Lugnuts lead. It was Lopez's fourth hit of the game, following a first-inning double, a second-inning triple, a sixth-inning single and an eighth-inning walk. Four batters later, Ryan Gold supplied his own RBI single for insurance.
Marcus Reyes (Win, 6-1) recorded the final four outs in perfect fashion to preserve the win.
Reyes had entered the game in the bottom of the ninth after the Captains rallied from an 8-5 deficit with three unearned runs off Josh Hiatt (Blown Save, 1). He stranded runners at second and third, inducing a groundout from Josh Rolette to send the game to extra innings.
The Lugnuts had jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning, thanks to a Lopez's second straight game with a leadoff double followed by a Hunter Steinmetz RBI single.
Lopez's RBI triple in the second inning increased the lead to 2-0, and he scored on an Alex Royalty wild pitch for a three-run lead - but the Captains erased the deficit with three runs in the bottom of the second inning against Lugnuts starter Cobi Johnson .
Griffin Conine put the Lugnuts in front, 5-3, with a tie-breaking two-run homer in the top of the third inning off Royalty - but the Caps leveled the score with solo tallies in the bottom of the third off Johnson and the fourth inning off reliever Justin Watts .
Captains reliever Luis Araujo tossed a run-scoring wild pitch in the fifth, bringing in Gabriel Moreno for a 6-5 Lugnuts lead.
Reliever Fitz Stadler blanked the Captains from the fifth through the seventh innings, with Hiatt adding a scoreless eighth.
In the top of the ninth, Moreno scored from third on a Kyle Marman wild pitch, increasing the lead to 7-5. Johnny Aiello followed with a sacrifice fly for a three-run cushion - but it disappeared in the ninth via RBI singles from Jonathan Engelmann and Connor Smith, sandwiched around a Clark Scolamiero RBI groundout.
The Lugnuts outhit the Captains, 14-7, but also committed three errors, leading to four unearned runs.
The game additionally featured five hit-batters, three by Lugnuts pitchers, and eight wild pitches, six by Lake County pitchers.
In the win, Lansing left fielder Tanner Kirwer went 3-for-4 with a stolen base and two runs scored, and Moreno finished 1-for-2 with three walks, an HBP and three runs scored.
Lugnuts right-hander Eric Pardinho (1.88 ERA) starts the third game of the series at 7 p.m. Thursday, opposing Captains southpaw Zach Draper (2.63).
The Nuts return to Cooley Law School Stadium for a three-game series with the South Bend Cubs from August 7-9, capped off by LAFCU Fireworks on Friday, August 9th. To live the Lug Life and purchase tickets, visit lansinglugnuts.com, call (517) 485-4500 or come to the Cooley Law School Stadium box office at 505 E. Michigan Ave. in downtown Lansing.
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