The West Michigan Whitecaps struggled to create offense, while a sixth-inning RBI-single by Otto Lopez resulted in a 1-0 loss to the Lansing Lugnuts on Monday night at Cooley Law School Stadium.
Only three West Michigan batters reached base, and the team just enjoyed a single at-bat with a runner in scoring position, getting a baserunner as far as second base before Jeremiah Burks bounced into an inning-double play in the seventh.
Starting pitchers Garrett Hill and Cobi Johnson dominated with five scoreless innings for West Michigan and Lansing in the early going, as Hill struck out seven consecutive batters in the process. The game held a scoreless tie into the sixth when Lugnuts infielder Otto Lopez delivered a go-ahead RBI-single to give Lansing a 1-0 lead. In the eighth, the Lugnuts loaded the bases before Lopez grounded into an inning-ending double play. Meanwhile, the last seven ‘Caps were retired in order to give Lansing the win in their first of 16 meetings this season.
Whitecaps reliever Xavier Javier (0-1) gave up the only run of the ballgame in suffering his first loss, while Lansing pitcher Fitz Stadler (1-0) enjoyed his first win of the season with four scoreless innings out of the bullpen. The Whitecaps record falls to 2-3 while Lansing improves to 3-2. Ames was the only Whitecaps hitter to reach base multiple times with a single and a walk.
The game lasted just one hour and 54 minutes, which marks as the shortest time of a Whitecaps game since a seven-inning contest lasted only an hour and 46 minutes on April 18, 2018 against Bowling Green played as part of a doubleheader. This marks the second time in the first five games that the ‘Caps have lost by a 1-0 score.
The Whitecaps four-game series against the Lansing Lugnuts beginning continues Tuesday from Cooley Law School Stadium at 6:05 pm. Pitcher Kacey Murphy gets the start for West Michigan against Lansing righty Josh Winckowski. Broadcast coverage with Dan Hasty starts on the Whitecaps Baseball Network at 5:55 pm. Tickets are available for any Whitecaps 2019 home contest by calling the Whitecaps front office at 616-784-4131 or by visiting www.whitecapsbaseball.com.