EASTLAKE, Ohio – For a second consecutive night on Saturday, the TinCaps saw a 2-1 lead vaporized in the ninth in a 3-2 walk-off loss to the Lake County Captains (Cleveland Indians) at Classic Park. Fort Wayne now has eight walk-off losses on the year — three of which have come here.
Connor Marabell knocked a pinch-hit, two-run double to right-center field off Lou Distasio (L, 1-1) to score Ordomar Valdez and Nathan Lukes for the Lake County victory.
Valdez led the inning off with a single. After Distasio struck out Willi Castro, Lukes singled, too, sending Valdez to third base. That set the stage for the left-handed batting Marabell.
The TinCaps (4-6, 40-40) had taken a 2-1 lead with a pair of runs in the seventh. Catcher Austin Allen singled to start the frame and moved up to second base on a wild pitch by Dominic Demasi. Third baseman Carlos Belen brought Allen in with a double to left to tie the game, 1-1. First baseman Brad Zunica followed with an RBI double of his own for the lead.
The Captains (5-5, 45-35) initially led 1-0 on a sixth-inning RBI single from Valdez.
Both starting pitchers were terrific. For Fort Wayne, righty Blake Rogers — in his first professional start — worked five scoreless innings, facing just one over the minimum. On the other side, lefty Tom Pannone kept the TinCaps off the board for six frames. Meanwhile, Billy Strode (W, 1-0) pitched a scoreless top of the ninth for the home team.
J.C. Cosme pitched a perfect seventh and eighth for the visitors, while Nick Monroe was on the mound in the sixth.
Belen led Fort Wayne with three hits — all doubles. He now has 46 hits on the season with more than half going for extra bases, as he has 15 doubles, five triples, and four home runs.
Both teams will get back at it Sunday at 7 p.m.