The Great Lakes Loons scored 4 runs in the bottom of the sixth inning on their way to a 5-3 victory over the Bowling Green Hot Rods (Tampa Bay Rays) in front of 4,347 fans at Dow Diamond this evening.
The Loons are now 5-5 in the second half of the MWL eastern division standings, 2.5 games back of the Lansing Lugnuts (7-2). The top two teams at the end of each half (in each division) qualify for the post season.
Loons shortstop Cristian Gomez led off the bottom of the sixth inning with a single to left and outfielder Darien Tubbs followed with a walk. Red hot newcomer Noah Perio then snuck a grounder through to right field to load the bases.
Fresh off of only 7 games in the Pioneer rookie league -and making his Great Lakes Loons debut- following his selection by the Dodgers (32 overall) in the first round of the June, 9 2016 MLB draft, 21 year old catcher Will Smith (not the Fresh Prince) drove in two runs with a single up the middle to tie the game at 3-runs apiece.
Perio would score on a passed ball and second baseman Omar Estevez drove in Smith for a 5-3 Loons lead they would never relinquish.
Loons starter Dennis Santana (1-8, 3.17 ERA) gave up 2-runs off 4 hits while striking out 6 Bowling Green batters through 5-innings.
Reliever Nolan Long (3-7, 5.57 ERA) earned the victory giving up 1 run off 2-hits, 1 walk, striking out 3 through 3-innings. Closer Alexander Hermeling (2.43 ERA) earned his fifth save of the season coming in for the ninth inning.
Smith may not be in the same tax bracket as the real 'Fresh Prince of Bel-Air' yet, however, following his $1.775 million dollar signing bonus he could be on his way to becoming the 'Debonair Duke of the Dodgers' at least?
He was 1 for 4 with 2 rbi to lead the Loons' offensive attack; while Tubbs (1 for 3), and Estevez (1 for 4) added single rbi's respectively.
The Loons will try to take the three game series with Bowling Green tomorrow afternoon at 2:05 pm at Dow Diamond before heading out on a four game road trip against West Michigan Mon thru Thurs of next week.