Through six innings Monday night, Dayton’s Robert Stephenson looked nearly unhittable. The 2011 first-round draft pick allowed only one unearned run and three baserunners against the TinCaps. However, the Dayton bullpen couldn’t hang on, and Fort Wayne scored a 5-4, come-from-behind win over the Dragons, earning a three-game series sweep.
Stephenson, who struck out seven batters in his six innings, surrendered only two hits, and made it look as though Fort Wayne’s five-game winning streak would come to an end. He retired the side in order in three of the first four innings.
Meanwhile, Fort Wayne’s Walker Weickel, who was in search of his first win of the year, surrendered two runs in the first inning on a single from Dayton’s Seth Mejias-Brean. That Dayton (12-24) lead held through the first five innings. Weickel, who departed after the fourth inning, walked three and struck out four.
The tide turned for Fort Wayne (22-13) when lefty Wandy Peralta (0-4) emerged from the Dragons bullpen. He gave up a two-run home run to Brian Adams, which was tattooed off the left-field scoreboard, in the seventh inning, bringing the TinCaps to within one, 4-3. He then allowed Stephen Carmon to score from third in the eighth on a wild pitch, and was also charged with a run driven in by Gabriel Quintana, who plated the go-ahead run with an eighth inning sacrifice fly.
The TinCaps bullpen held strong over the final three innings, with Chris Nunn (2-0) turning in two scoreless innings, and Roman Madrid pitching a 1-2-3 ninth for his sixth save in seven tries. The TinCaps are now on a season-best six-game winning streak, which is their longest since July 16-July 22, 2012.
Fort Wayne returns home Tuesday for a 7:05 first pitch in the first of a three-game series against first-place Bowling Green. The TinCaps are scheduled to send Joe Ross to the mound against the Hot Rods’ Blake Snell.