Game recap from the TinCaps:
TinCaps Take Series Over Whitecaps
Fort Wayne Hosts Lake County Saturday Night
COMSTOCK PARK, Mich. (September 5, 2014) – For the fourth consecutive year, the TinCaps have advanced to the Eastern Division Championship Series. Fort Wayne won a decisive Game 3 Friday night at West Michigan, 6-2. With the win, the second-half wild card TinCaps ended the first-half division champion Whitecaps’ season and now face the Lake County Captains Saturday at 6:05 p.m. at Parkview Field.
After a 1 hour, 44-minute rain delay, Fort Wayne pounced early on West Michigan starter Jonathon Crawford, the 20th overall pick in the 2013 draft. Trea Turner led the game off with a triple to right-center field. The game’s second batter, Ronnie Richardson, smacked a single up the middle to spark the TinCaps to a 1-0 lead. Later in the inning, on a double-steal, Richardson came in to score from third base to make it 2-0. Then in the third, Richardson gave Fort Wayne a 3-0 advantage when he plated Turner on a sacrifice fly.
Meanwhile, TinCaps starter Kyle Lloyd out-pitched Crawford. Following a first-inning single by Wynton Bernard, Lloyd retired 12 Whitecaps in a row. Of those 12 consecutive outs, seven were strikeouts.
John Nester bolstered Fort Wayne’s lead in the fourth inning with a solo home run to dead-center field. That same inning, Josh VanMeter added an RBI single to make it 5-0 in favor of the visitors. Crawford, the No. 3 prospect in the Detroit Tigers’ farm system, was knocked out of the game with one out in the fourth.
Lloyd left the game after five innings with only one run allowed on three hits and no walks. Relievers Nick Mutz, Eric Yardley, and Ryan Butler worked the final four innings without allowing an earned run.
West Michigan put up an unearned run in the bottom of the seventh in response to a Franmil Reyes RBI single in the top of the seventh. The Whitecaps, however, never mustered much of a rally. It was the third time in as many games the TinCaps out-hit West Michigan. In this case, 8-5.
Game 1 of the Eastern Division Championship Series can be heard on ESPN Radio 1380, TinCaps.com, and the TuneIn Radio app. The game can also be seen throughout Indiana on XFINITY Channel 81. Tickets are available online at TinCaps.com, by phone at 260-482-6400, or at the Parkview Field Ticket Office.