Gonzalez Stays Hot, Cubs Edge Captains
(South Bend, IN) - Oscar Gonzalez had another sensational day at the plate, but it was not enough for the Lake County Captains (20-28, 49-69) on Sunday afternoon against the South Bend Cubs (21-28, 55-63). Gonzalez tallied three hits, but the Captains lost game two of a four-game series at Four Winds Field, 5-4.
Gonzalez helped the Captains take an early lead. With one out in the first, he singled off of Cubs starter Enrique De Los Rios. The right-hander walked Jose Vicente with two outs and Will Benson followed with a check-swing single that looped over shortstop Rafael Narea and landed in left-center. Gonzalez scored the first run of the ballgame.
South Bend evened the score in the third. Captains lefty Juan Hillman walked Clayton Daniel with one out and threw a wild pitch to move the runner up to second. Daniel advanced to third on a ground out and scored when Delvin Zinn singled to tie the game at 1-1.
The Cubs scored four runs in the fourth, thanks in part to two Captains errors, to take a 5-1 lead. Jimmy Herron began the inning with a double and Narea tried to bunt him up to third. Hillman fielded the bunt and went to throw to first, but Vicente had vacated the base after charging on the bunt attempt. Second baseman Richard Palacios hustled to cover the bag, but Hillman's throw was slightly wide and Palacios could not get his foot to the base. The play was scored as a throwing error on the pitcher and the Cubs had runners on the corners. Cam Balego came through with a single that plated Herron and gave South Bend its first lead of the series at 2-1.
The fourth continued with another error on a tough hop at third. After a wild pitch moved the runners to second and third, Brandon Hughes hit a grounder with sideways spin toward Tyler Friis and the ball took a high and wide bounce. It ultimately hit the end of Friis' glove and kicked away for an error. Narea scored from third to give South Bend a 3-1 lead and Hughes was credited with an RBI. Chris Singleton followed with a bunt single to load the bases and Clayton Daniel singled on a ball that Palacios knocked down on a dive to his left. That play scored Balego to push the Cubs' lead to 4-1. The Captains then turned a double play on a grounder to shortstop by Jose Gutierrez, but Hughes scored to extend the South Bend advantage to 5-1.
Lake County got a run back in the fifth, again thanks to Gonzalez. He doubled with two outs and Palacios singled to right field. Hughes came up firing to the plate, but Gonzalez slid in safely and the Captains trimmed their deficit to 5-2
The Captains rallied in the eighth and nearly came all the way back. Benson began the frame with a one-out walk and Elvis Perez tried to bunt him to second base. Pitcher Brian Glowicki spun around to his left as he finished his delivery and when he turned around, fumbled a barehand pick-up attempt. With runners on first and second, Glowicki got Jesse Berardi to pop up in foul ground down the left field line and Zinn made a tough over-the-shoulder grab for the second out. With Laureano up and the runners still on first and second, Benson took off for third. Balego's throw from behind the plate sailed wide and deflected off of Zinn's glove before hopping into left. Benson got up from his slide and scored easily, as Perez moved up to second. Laureano then singled in Perez to cut the Cubs' lead to 5-4. Glowicki then got Gabriel Mejia to ground out to second for the last out of the inning.
Glowicki shut the door on the Captains in the ninth. The right-hander set down the top of the order, one-two-three and picked up his 16th save in the process. That secured a win for De Los Rios (2-3), who pitched five innings in his fourth start of the year. He allowed two runs on five hits with two strikeouts and one walk.
Hillman (3-12) took the loss. The lefty allowed five runs - three earned - on six hits. He walked a pair and struck out one.
Gonzalez finished the contest with a game-high three hits in a 3-for-5 performance. The Captains' left fielder extended his hitting streak to seven games, during which he has gone 16-for-31 (.516) with a homer and five doubles. Gonzalez also has four games with three or more hits during the streak and has started this road trip 7-for-10 with three doubles.
The Cubs snapped their four-game losing streak and the Captains split the first two games of their seven-game road trip. Lake County and South Bend face off again on Monday. First pitch at Four Winds Field is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
Information about Classic Park or the Captains can be found online at www.captainsbaseball.com and by phone at 440-954-WINS (9467). Affordable ticket packages and group party and picnic options are available now.
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