Captains’ starter Will Roberts and Cougars’ starter Kellen Moen continued the pitcher’s duel from Sunday with two and a half perfect innings to start the ballgame.
Kane County capitalized on some fielding mistakes to take an early lead in the third. First baseman Murray Watts reached on a fielding error by catcher Alex Lavisky and catcher Jin-Ho Shin reached on an error by center fielder Luigi Rodriguez. Second baseman Justin Trapp brought home Watts and Shin with a one out single and Kane County led 2-0 after three innings.
The Captains offense came alive in the fourth inning. Rodriguez led off with a triple to right field, shortstop Francisco Lindor walked and stole second, and then right fielder Bryson Myles singled home Rodriguez. Designated hitter Patrick Tolentino grounded out to shortstop, scoring Lindor for his third RBI of the year. Myles scored on a Moen balk.
Second baseman Robel Garcia walked and third baseman Leonardo Castillo singled. First baseman Jerrud Sabourin walked to load the bases for left fielder Todd Hankins, and he cleared the bases with a double into the center field gap. The Captains loaded the bases once more in the inning but could not widen the lead.
Moen was replaced by reliever Matt Ridings after the Hankins’ double. Moen pitched 3.2 innings, allowing six runs on four hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
The Cougars clawed back in the bottom half of the fourth inning with three runs. Right fielder Jorge Bonifacio tripled to lead off the inning and then designated hitter Orlando Calixte singled home Bonifacio. The Cougars loaded the bases with two more walks and Trapp hit a two run double down the left field line to score Calixte and Watts.
Kane County regained the lead in the sixth. Watts hit a lead off double and then Shin laid down a sacrifice bunt and still reached base. Left fielder Tim Ferguson scored Watts with a force out. Trapp nailed the next Roberts’ pitch deep to right field for a two run home run. Trapp had six RBI on the afternoon.
Francisco Valera (1-2, 2.31 ERA) relieved Roberts following the home run. Roberts pitched 5.1 innings, allowing eight runs (six earned) on eight hits. He walked two and struck out no one.
Lake County scored a run in the seventh after a Tolentino groundout scored Myles.
Lake County regained the lead for good in the eighth inning. Michael Giovenco (0-2, 7.27) allowed the run in the seventh and was tagged by the long ball in the inning. Castillo doubled and Sabourin singled to lead off the inning. Rodriguez launched a three run bomb to right field, his first of the year. Lindor followed with his first professional home run to right field. The Captains led 11-8 and held onto the lead.
Giovenco took the loss and he allowed five runs on six hits and struck out two in his 1.1 innings of work.
Valera pitched 1.2 innings, only allowing two walks and one strikeout. Jeff Johnson picked up his first save, pitching two innings allowing two hits and three strikeouts.
Rodriguez and Myles led the 14 hit outburst with three hits apiece. Everyone reached base at least once in the game for the Captains.
Game three on Tuesday is set for a 12:00 PM first pitch. The Captains will send right-hander Joe Colon (1-1, 3.68) to the mound to face off against Cougars right-hander Santiago Garrido (2-0 1.64).