Game recap from the TinCaps:
TinCaps finish regular season with 17-0 win
(September 7, 2015) – The TinCaps pummeled the Bowling Green Hot Rods, 17-0, on Monday to end the regular season with an exclamation mark. Fort Wayne finished the 2015 season with the best overall record in the Eastern Division at 77-61.
Fort Wayne (45-25, 77-61) has the day off on Tuesday, and then travels to Comstock Park, Mich., to begin the Eastern Division Semifinals against the West Michigan Whitecaps on Wednesday night.
On Monday afternoon, 5,382 fans filled up the seats at Parkview Field. For the fourth year in a row, more than 400,000 fans made it out to the ballpark, and this season, Fort Wayne averaged more fans per game than any other year at Parkview Field. In 67 openings, the TinCaps averaged 5,971 fans per game. Fort Wayne had three fireworks nights rained out.
The TinCaps set a season-high for runs Monday, but fell one shy of tying the franchise record for most runs in a game 18, which has happened three times but not since 1998. Fort Wayne tallied 20 hits – two shy of a franchise record and one short of the season high of 19 set on June 14 against Clinton.
The TinCaps scored off of Bowling Green (32-36, 69-69) pitchers in six of the eight innings on Labor Day. Franmil Reyes drove in the game’s first run in the bottom of the first inning off of Brad Wallace (L, 2-6). Fort Wayne added another later in the frame to go up, 2-0. With Luis Tejada aboard in the second inning, Michael Miller bashed his second home run of the season to give Fort Wayne a 4-0 lead.
Reyes then doubled with two outs in the third, and the next batter, Franchy Cordero plated the slugger with the first of his two hits. The lead was stretched to 5-0.
Two more runs scored for the home team in the fifth frame. Once again, it was Reyes who doubled in a pair.
The TinCaps still weren’t done. Both Rey Bruguera and Josh VanMeter reached base to start the seventh. After a Michael Gettys single, Trae Santos grounded out to plate one run, and Reyes drove in another to extend Fort Wayne’s lead to 9-0.
The game was already blown open when the TinCaps then batted around in the following inning. At one point in the eighth, five straight batters – Gettys, Santos, Reyes, Cordero and Tejada – drove in runs. It was capped by Tejada’s three-run blast over the left field fence.
Every player in the lineup recorded a hit, and six of the nine starters had multi-hit games. Reyes was the star, going 5-for-5 with three runs scored and five RBIs.
Fort Wayne’s pitching was just as dominant. Starter Pete Kelich (W, 3-2) needed just 62 pitches to blank the Hot Rods over six innings. Aaron Cressley (S, 1) followed with three shutout frames of his own, fanning five in the process.
The TinCaps begin their playoff run on the road on Wednesday against the Whitecaps at 6:35 p.m. Game 2 — and if necessary Game 3 — of that series will be at Parkview Field on Thursday and Friday.
You can listen to the action on ESPN Radio 1380, TinCaps.com, and the TuneIn Radio app starting at 6:15 p.m.
By Kevin Fitzgerald