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Lake County Sentinel
Captains pounded by TinCaps 10-5 on anniversary of epic storm   
​     BY TIM SHIRER
CAPTAINS BEAT WRITER
(EASTLAKE, OH) - The Lake County Captains welcomed the Fort Wayne TinCaps to Classic Park for a quick two game series on Tuesday night. The Captains were returning home from a 3-4 road trip to Lansing and West Michigan. The return home was not a smooth one for Lake County as they fell to the TinCaps 10-5 in a rain shortened affair, sending the 2,012 home disappointed.

The game started rough for Lake County starter Brock Hartson in the first inning and got no better. Hartson allowed three runs in the first inning and three runs in the second inning before being removed with one out in the second. Hartson’s line was ugly. In the inning and a third he gave up, five hits including a two-run home run in the first inning off the bat of Justin Lopez. The home run was Lopez’s eighth of the season. Four of the six runs Hartson allowed were earned and with the loss his record falls to 0-1 with a 27.00 ERA.

The start for Hartson was his first with the Captains since he was a member of the staff in 2016 when he pitched in 20 games and made 10 starts compiling a 7-5 record with a 2.86 ERA in 94.1 innings striking out 69 hitters and issuing 20 base on balls. After the 2017 season where he pitched at Lynchburg and two hip surgeries he retired as a player. He returned to his alma-mater Texas-San Antonio to be a coach. But during the 2019 college season the itch returned as he was feeling healthy and he decided he wanted to give life as pitcher one more shot. He called the Indians and asked if he could come back, they had local scout Kyle Van Hook take a look at him and he re-signed with the team shortly thereafter. After making one appearance in the AZL Rookie League he returned to Lake County tonight. Hartson said he wasn’t too worried about the numbers at this point. “it feels good to be part of the team.” Hartson went on to say that playing baseball has been his life’s dream and that, “You should chase the dream you love as long as you can.”

The Captains did manage two score two runs in the bottom of the first inning to close the gap to one run at 3-2. The runs came when Jose Fermin singled with two outs, he then scored when Ruben Cardenas doubled to the center field gap. Jesse Berardi who was just activated from the injured list earlier in the day singled and drove home Cardenas with the second run.

The TinCaps added single runs in the third and fourth innings and then two more in the seventh inning. The runs in the third and fourth innings were charged to Thomas Ponticelli who relieved Hartson. The two in the seventh inning were the responsibility of Kyle Marman. Marman came in to relieve Ponticelli.
The Captains added three more runs after the 20-minute weather delay. One in the eighth and then two more in the ninth on a two-run home run by Bo Naylor. The home run for Naylor was his sixth home run of the season. Naylor has been on fire lately as he has hit in eight straight games 11 for 34 .323 avg, with two home runs and 9 RBI in that span.

Fort Wayne starter Joey Cantillo picked up the win. Cantillo went six innings allowing two runs, both earned on five hits. He issued one base on balls and struck out eight Captains. With the win Cantillo improves to 6-2 with a 1.83 ERA.

The game was delayed by rain with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning which was ironic because seven years earlier on July 2, 2012 an epic storm rolled into Classic Park over the third base suites causing the game to be postponed, winds were so strong that the Captains grounds crew and front office group struggled to cover the field, which they never successfully did, drenching the field. About thirty to forty-five minutes later the stadium with what fans remained were evacuated into the front office as a tornado warning had been issued for Eastlake. Luckily for the folks in attendance the tornado never materialized, and all were safe.

The Captains and TinCaps will finish up the two-game series on Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. Lefty Ryan Weathers will be on the mound for the TinCaps. Weathers is 2-2 with 3.33 ERA. The Captains will counter with a righthander Alex Royalty. Royalty is 3-4 with a 4.10 ERA.
tshirer@lakecountysentinel.com or follow Tim on Twitter @IndiansTim Check out our IndiansNation fan Page
​POSTED 07/02/2019 23:10
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Classic Park July 2, 2012 storm clouds rolled in.
Photo by Tim Shirer