Captains win High-A Central East Division Title with 4-0 shut out of Snappers
BY TIM SHIRER
CAPTAINS BEAT WRITER
(EASTLAKE, OH) - The Lake County Captains entered Saturday night’s game at Classic Park against the visiting Beloit Snappers one game out of the last playoff spot in the High-A Central behind the Cedar Rapids Kernels. The Captains threw their current best at the Snappers and the did not bite as the Captains shut out Beloit 4-0.
The pitching matchup on was one that pitching enthusiasts would enjoy. Daniel Espino a 20-year-old righthander was on the mound for the Captains. Espino was the Cleveland Indians number one pick in the 2019 draft (24th overall). Eury Perez an 18-year-old righty that was signed when he was 16 in 2019 out of the Dominican Republic. Both pitchers are hard throwers who strikeout a lot batters. Entering the game Espino had pitched 42.1 innings with the Captains struck out 78 hitters. Perez had pitched 56 innings for Beloit and has 82 strikeouts. Velocity is the key for the two young men. Espino has been clocked at 101 mph and Perez has notched 98 on the radar gun but will eventually hit triple digits as he matures.
The Captains got on the board first off Perez in the third inning when he issued a base on balls to Raynel Delgado to start the inning. After getting Mike Amditis to pop up, Julian Escobedo singled moving Delgado to second base. He then issued a base on balls to Christian Cairo to load the bases for Jose Tena. Tena was unable to move the runners and struck out on four pitches. With Jhonkensy Noel at the plate Perez uncorked a wild pitch and Delgado scored the captains first run of the night, but Escobedo was thrown out when he came to far down the third base line on the same play to end the inning.
The Captains added three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning which was Perez’s last inning of work. After Noel struck out to start the inning Micah Pries deposited his seventh homer of the season over the right center field fence extending the lead to 2-0. Perez then gave up a double to Jonathan Rodriguez, it was his fourth double in his time at Lake County. After Perez retired Naranjo on strikes he could not finish the inning before giving up Delgado’s eighth home run of the season giving Lake County a 4-0 lead.
Espino went seven shut out innings for Lake County allowing only two hits and striking out 10 Snappers. He picked up the win and improved to 2-6 lowering his ERA to 4.04. Perez took the loss for the Snappers and falls to 1-2 with a 2.86 ERA.
The Captains remain a game behind the Cedar Rapids Kernels for the final playoff spot with one game to go. The Captains do own the tiebreaker. So, on Sunday if the Captains win and Cedar Rapids loses the Captains can still get the second and final playoff spot. However, the Captains did clinch the High-A Central East Division title tonight as the Great Lakes Loons lost giving the Captains the Division title.
The Captains will complete the regular season on Sunday afternoon when they play game six of the series with the Snappers. Righthander George Soriano will be on the mound for the Snappers. Soriano is 3-1 with a 3.62 ERA. The Captains will send their Sunday guy Mason Hickman to the mound. Hickman is also a righthander and has started every Sunday game for the Captains in 2021 and is 8-7 with a 4.76 ERA.
POSTED 09/18/2021 23:09