The Great Lakes Loons (14-24) picked up a much needed win on Wednesday afternoon, beating the first place South Bend Silver Hawks (23-12) by a score of 4-2 during a School Kid’s Day at Dow Diamond. It was just the Loons third win in the month of May.
“I thought the situational hitting was outstanding today,” Loons manager Razor Shines said. “We got a couple big sacrifice flies, which helped. When you get runners at third base with less than two outs, that’s what you’re supposed to do. I was proud of the effort today.”
Loons three-hitter Kevin Taylor hit his first home run of the season to open the scoring in the first inning. It was a solo home run that went 403 feet to right-center field. Taylor was 2-for-4, with two runs scored in the game. Tyler Ogle and James Baldwin both had multi-hit games for the Loons as well.
“I always try to see a couple pitches early on,” Taylor said. “I wanted to let the ball get deep (before swinging). Any time you hit a home run, you don’t really think about it, it just kind of happens.”
Great Lakes added one run in the fourth and one in the fifth to extend their lead. In the fourth, six-hitter Elevys Gonzalez tripled down the right field line and scored on a sacrifice fly from designated hitter Pat Stover. Taylor scored in the fifth on a Gonzalez sacrifice fly.
Brandon Sinnery (0-2, 2.37 ERA), who played his college ball at the University of Michigan, started on the mound for South Bend. He went five innings and gave up three runs on seven hits to pick up the loss. Sinnery struck out three and walked one.
The Silver Hawks cut the deficit to 3-2 with in the top of the seventh inning when eight-hitter Pedro Ruiz hit a two-run single to right field, scoring Kevin Medrano and Roidany Aguila. Ruiz was 3-for-3 in the game.
Loons starter Carlos Frias (4-1, 1.59 ERA) scattered eight hits over seven innings, as he held the Silver Hawks to just two runs. Only of the runs that he gave up was earned. Frias picked up the win, striking out three and walking one in his seven innings of work.
“The changeup was really working for me today and I was able to get ahead in the count early, which helped,” Frias said. “I wasn’t focused on anything they were doing. I just wanted to keep my command and attack the strike zone early.”
The Loons added another run in the home half of the seventh to bring the score to 4-2. With two outs, Stover was hit by a pitch and scored on a Leo Rodriguez double that went to deep left-center field.
Geoff Brown pitched a scoreless eighth inning in relief and Scott Griggs did not allow a baserunner in the ninth to pick up his fourth save of the season.
The Loons are back in action on Thursday night, as they wrap up a three-game series with the South Bend Silver Hawks. The projected starter for the Loons is Angel Sanchez (1-3, 3.92 ERA), while Blake Perry (0-2, 6.65 ERA) is expected to start for South Bend.