The West Michigan Whitecaps scored four runs in the sixth inning to break a 1-1 tie as part of an 8-2 victory over the Great Lakes Loons on Thursday night at Dow Diamond.
The Whitecaps pick up a victory for the fourth time in their last six games and have scored 23 runs in the first three games of this six-game series. West Michigan picked up 12 hits in the contest led by a three-hit performance by Detroit Tigers No. 5 prospect Daniel Cabrera.
The Loons took the lead in the first when Andy Pages ripped an RBI-single into left field to give Great Lakes a 1-0 advantage. The inning continued with the Loons loading the bases with one out before starting pitcher Garrett Hill struck out the next two batters to limit the damage and keep the Whitecaps trailing by a single run. In the second, back-to-back doubles by Gage Workman and Rey Rivera tied the game at one as both pitchers settled in and kept the game scoreless until the sixth, when West Michigan exploded for four runs. Bases-loaded walks to Andrew Navigato, and Cooper Johnson preceded a two-run single by Jimmy Kerr to take a 5-1 lead. After the Loons plated a run in the seventh, Kerr tacked on another ‘Caps run with a bloop RBI-single to extend the West Michigan lead to 6-2. In the ninth, Parker Meadows blasted a two-run homer – his fourth of the season – to bring the ‘Caps lead to 8-2 and finish their scoring in the contest.
Hill (2-0) finished the ballgame tossing five innings of one-run baseball while striking out eight in earning his second win of the season. Loons lefty Franklin De La Paz (0-2) gave up three runs out of the bullpen in taking his first loss of the year. The Whitecaps record improves to 35-39 on the season while the first-place Loons fall to 41-34. Rivera, Johnson, and Kerr each had two hits to lead the Whitecaps to their fourth win in their last six games.
The Whitecaps and Loons continue this six-game series from Dow Diamond in Midland on Friday at 7:05 pm. West Michigan sends Brendan White to the mound against the Loons Landon Knack. Broadcast coverage with Dan Hasty starts on the Whitecaps Baseball Network at 6:50 pm. Get your tickets for all 2021 home games now at www.whitecapsbaseball.com.