The Great Lakes Loons scored three runs in the bottom of the third inning to take a 3-0 lead over the Bowling Green Hot Rods in the opening game of the (best of three) Midwest League eastern division semi-final's at Dow Diamond tonight.
Loons starter, and the Dodgers' $16 million dollar man from Matanzas, Cuba,
Yadier Alverez used two strikeouts to get out of the top half of the fourth inning before the game was suspended due to rain just after 8 pm. The two teams will pick up where they left off with the Loons coming up to bat in the bottom of the fourth inning. First pitch is set for 2:05 pm Thursday afternoon at Dow Diamond. Gates open at 1:30 pm.
Alverez allowed a total of 5 hits over each of his four innings on the mound Wednesday night, but managed to get out of each inning without allowing a run, most notably was the top of the third when a spectacular catch by Loons center fielder Logan Landon saved a sure run and ended the inning.
With a runner on second and two outs, Bowling Green left fielder David Olmedo-Barrera roped a high line shot that was tailing toward the gap in left center field, but the speedy Landon tracked it down and completely laid out, making an incredible, back-handed, run-saving, diving catch to end the inning.
Landon's teammates responded with a three-run outburst in the bottom half of the inning. Gage Green's two out single put him in position to score on Saige Jenco's RBI double down the left field line. Zach McKinstry walked and Omar Estevez singled to score Jenco, and a throwing error to third allowed McKinstry to score.
Jenco attributed the rally to Landon's incredible run-saving catch. He also had me searching the urban dictionary to find out what 'dappin'
“That was huge,” said Jenco of Landon's catch. “He came in the dugout and everyone was 'dappin' him up, getting him hype, and we answered with some runs, but that's how it is, that's how good teams play, you know. You make a good play and you're like, alright, everyone's loose now because something happened so the bat's should start flowing, and that's kind of how good teams do it. You see it in the pro's and it trickles down to the minor leagues. That's just how good teams are wired.” *Side note from the Urban Dictionary: Dappin is defined as the most fun a person can have without being intoxicated.
Jenco has hit safely in 9 of his last 11 games with 8 runs scored, and 6 stolen bases, but he's quick to point out that he isn't the sole leader on this team of destiny. This team has that special chemistry where anyone in the lineup can step up when needed.
“We all feel it, Jenco said. “A couple weeks Logan (Landon) was leading us, a couple weeks it was (Ibandel) Isabel, a couple weeks I was doing pretty well, and I think it's just everyone is feeding off that now, and it's just hit's after hit's, and it's really fun being in the dugout with these guys. It's dangerous to play against a team like us, you can't count us out until the very last strike or the last out.
“You've seen it all year, us coming back in the ninth inning, and it's something that really motivates us, and we have pride in, especially going late in games. We don't stress at all about being down by any certain number of runs late in the game.”
From the Loons: *Fans that purchased tickets for Wednesday's playoff game will have their ticket honored at Thursday's resumption game. Fans that are unable to attend should contact the Loons ticket staff at (989) 837-BALL or visit the Dow Diamond box office.