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Lake County Sentinel
Captains drop slugfest 8-5 in 11 innings   
          BY TIM SHIRER
(EASTLAKE, OH) – The Lake County Captains and Great Lakes Loons played game three of their six game series on Thursday night. The two teams swept the first two with the Captains winning game one 7-5 and the Loons taking game two with a 5-0 shutout. The Captains bats came a live late, but it was not enough as they fell 8-5 in 11 innings in front of the 1,764 fans in attendance at Classic Park.

The Loons jumped on the Captains right away scoring two runs in the first inning off Captain’s starter Zach Draper. Draper a lefty gave up four hits in the first innings resulting the in the Loons 2-0 lead.

The Loons added a run in the fourth inning when Deacon Liput belted a solo home run to right field.
The Captains got on the board for the first time in bottom of the fourth inning when George Valera belted his eighth home run of the season deep over the center field fence to cut the lead to 3-1.

The Loons got the run back in right away as Brandon Lewis hit a one out solo home run over the left field wall to give the Loons a 4-1 lead.

Bryan Lavastida cut the lead to two runs when he singled with one out in the inning and moved to third on a single by Jose Tena. Finally scoring with Victor Nova at the plate on a wild pitch by Loon’s reliever Jose Martinez.

The Captains tied the game 4-4 in the bottom of the seventh inning with two runs. The runs came when Aaron Bracho led off the inning with by drawing a base on balls. Cody Farhat then singled and moved Bracho to third base. Farhat moved to second on same play when Joe Vranesh committed a fielding error. Bracho scored one batter later when Will Brennan grounded out to the shortstop and Farhat moved to third base. Farhat scored three pitches later on an 0-2 count and Bryan Rocchio hit a sacrifice-fly to left field and Farhat trotted home to tie the game 4-4.

The lead did not last long as Ryan Ward led off the ninth inning with a triple off Captain’s reliever Jerson Ramirez. Ramirez entered the game to start the eighth inning. After Ramirez got Liput to fly out to center field Zac Ching singled to left field driving home Ward and giving the Loons a 5-4 lead.

Things looked bleak for Lake County, but Farhat had other ideas. With two outs and an 0-1 count Farhat blasted his first home for Lake County over the left field fence tying the game 5-5.

As the game entered extra innings neither team could successfully put a run across the plate in the 10th inning. But the 11th inning was a completely different story. When the inning began with Carson Taylor starting the inning as the Rob Manfred runner at second base he scored when the leadoff hitter Ward doubled to left field giving the Loons all they needed taking a 6-5 lead. They were not done. Liput then singled moving Ward to third base. Ching then grounded out to third base and Ward came home with the Loons seventh run. The final run of the game was scored when Justin Yurchak singled and Liput crossed the plate giving the 8-5 lead that proved to be the final score.

Braidyn Fink picked up the win for the Loons and improves to 1-4 with a 4.34 ERA. Mike Mokma picked up his first save of the season pitching a scoreless 11th inning with two strikeouts. Kevin Kelly pitched the 11th inning for Lake County and took the loss. Kelly gave up three runs, two earned (Rob Manfred runner’s run is not earned) on three hits and struck out one hitter. With the loss Kelly falls to 1-2 with a 3.82 ERA.

Game four of the series will be on Friday night at 7:00 p.m. Clayton Beeter will be on the mound for the Loons. Beeter, a 22-year-old righthander was the Los Angeles Dodgers second round pick (66th overall) in the 2020 MLB Draft out of Texas Tech University. On the year he is 0-4 with a 4.91 ERA. The Captains will one up the Loons by throwing Daniel Espino. Espino, a 20-year-old righthander was the Cleveland Indians first round pick (24th overall) in the 2019 MLB Draft out of Georgia Premier Academy (Statesboro, GA). Espino is 0-1 with a 4.50 ERA in one start with Lake County.
tshirer@lakecountysentinel.com or follow Tim on Twitter @TBBucsTim Check out our IndiansNation fan Page
​POSTED 07/22/2021 23:16
Lake County Captains Leftfielder Cody Farhat.                     Photo by Tommy Shirer