In the lowest-scoring game of the 2021 season, the West Michigan Whitecaps blanked the Lake County Captains 1-0 via a walk-off balk in the 10th inning Wednesday night at LMCU Ballpark.
A balk by Lake County reliever Kellen Rholl allowed the game-winning run to cross in the 10th – the first time West Michigan won on a walk-off balk since May 22nd, 2018.
Pitching was king as both staffs traded blows early and often, combining for a staggering 22 strikeouts as West Michigan managed a mere two base hits in the win. Whitecaps starter and reigning High-A Central Pitcher of The Week, Beau Brieske, tied his record for the longest start by any West Michigan hurler this season (May 20th at Wisconsin) lasting six shutout innings while striking out five Captains hitters. The bullpen behind him was equally as impressive as Jared Tobey, Brendan White, and Yaya Chentouf combined to allow one hit through the final four frames to put enable the 1-0 shutout victory. On the other end, Lake County starter Logan Allen was equally impressive, tossing six scoreless innings while punching out five ‘Caps batters.
Chentouf (3-1) moves into the team lead in wins with three on the campaign. Rholl (0-1) struck out the only batter he faced before his game-ending balk in suffering his first 2021 defeat. The Whitecaps (10-9) move over .500 for the first time in 2021 as the Captains fall to 11-10. Over his last three starts, Brieske has gone 17 frames while allowing just two runs (one earned) on 21 strikeouts without issuing a walk.
Wednesday’s 1-0 final marks the 100th time in Whitecaps history that a 1-0 score decided a game. The Whitecaps hold a 51-49 record in those contests.
The Whitecaps continue this six-game series with the Lake County Captains at LMCU Ballpark on Thursday at 6:35 pm. Whitecaps righty Jesus Rodriguez takes the mound against Captains lefty Raymond Burgos. Broadcast coverage with Dan Hasty begins on the Whitecaps Baseball Network at 6:20 pm. A limited number of tickets are available for select Whitecaps 2021 home contests by calling the Whitecaps front office at 616-784-4131 or visiting www.whitecapsbaseball.com.