EASTLAKE, OH- Paul Hendrix overcame a rough night in the field where he made two errors in key spots but he made up for it with a homerun when it counted. His two-run homerun in the seventh inning completed the rally in which the Lake County Captains (26-25, 53-68) defeated the Dayton Dragons (25-27, 61-59) 4-3 on Thursday night. The Captains won the three game series.
The Captains jumped out to a 1-0 lead with three straight singles in the second inning. Right fielder Mike Papi and left fielder Dorssys Paulino singled before catcher Richard Stock laced a RBI single through the right side, scoring Papi.
Starter Sal Romano goes four innings for Dayton with four hits and one run allowed. He walked one and struck out five. Evan Mitchell entered for the fifth inning in relief.
On the home side, lefty Anderson Polanco pitched a season-high five innings before giving way to Justin Brantley. Polanco scattered two singles and two walks in keeping the Dragons scoreless. Polanco struck out a season-high eight batters.
“Polanco gave us a season-high in innings. He threw a lot of strikes and kept us in the game as he put up zeroes, said Budzinski.
Lake County added a run in the fifth against Mitchell to double the lead. Centerfielder Clint Frazier coaxed a one-out walk and stole second base. First baseman Nellie Rodriguez lined a two-out double to the right-center field gap to plate Frazier.
Mitchell surrendered one run on two hits in two innings of relief. He struck out five of the nine batters he faced.
Dayton gained the lead with a three-run sixth inning. Designated hitter Jon Matthews walked before second baseman Ronald Bueno reached on an infield single. Left fielder Phil Ervin walked to load the bases with one out. Captains second baseman Paul Hendrix booted a groundball that allowed every runner to advance and Matthews to score. Catcher Jose Ortiz lined a two-run single to left field.
Brantley gave up three runs on two hits and two walks in one inning of work. Southpaw Wander Beras followed him to the mound in the seventh.
Nolan Becker replaced Mitchell for the seventh inning. Frazier singled into center field and trotted home on Hendrix’s homerun to left field. The Captains took a 4-3 lead. Becker fell to 1-2 with the loss.
“He got a 0-2 pitch, a breaking ball and hit it well to left field to put us up in the game,” said Mark Budzinski on Hendrix’s homerun.
Beras ran into a jam when Hendrix made his second error of the game. A walk and a stolen base put runners on the corners with one out. Beras got an unassisted double play at first to escape the jam. Beras threw two scoreless innings to improve to 3-2 on the year,.
Alejandro Chacin pitched a scoreless eighth inning to keep the game at one run.
Trevor Frank earned his thirteenth save of the year with a perfect ninth inning.
The Captains had eight hits in the game to Dayton’s four. Paulino had a two-hit game to lead the Captains. Lake County hitters struck out 15 times in the win.
Lake County will travel to Fort Wayne for a three game series on Friday night. RHP Dace Kime (6-13, 5.04) will start for the Captains against RHP Kyle Lloyd (5-4, 3.97) for the Tincaps. First pitch from Parkview Field is at 7:00 PM.