Liberatore K's Nine, Witherspoon Has Four Hits in 7-1 Win
Lansing, MI - Grant Witherspoon had four hits while Matthew Liberatore struck out a career-high nine hitters in the Bowling Green Hot Rods 7-1 victory over the Lansing Lugnuts to snap a four-game losing streak on Saturday night at Cooley Law School Stadium. The Hot Rods improve to 39-30 but were eliminated from first-half wild card contention after the Lake County Captains defeated the Fort Wayne TinCaps later in the evening. The Hot Rods and Lugnuts conclude their series and the first half with a 12:05 PM CDT first pitch on Sunday.
The Hot Rods jumped out to an early lead for the second-straight night thanks to a four-run first inning against Lansing starter Josh Hiatt. Michael Smith worked a one-out walk and went to third on Kaleo Johnson's single to right. Chris Betts lifted a sacrifice fly to center field, scoring Smith to make it a 1-0 game and Witherspoon singled right to move Johnson to second. Ford Proctor singled to center, plating Johnson to give Bowling Green a 2-0 edge. Roberto Alvarez struck a single to right in the next at-bat, scoring both Witherspoon and Proctor to open up a 4-0 lead.
Bowling Green got to Hiatt and reliever Joey Pulido in the fifth to extend their lead. Johnson walked to start the inning and scored when Betts doubled down the line to right, making it a 5-0 game. Witherspoon singled to right for his third hit of the game, driving in Betts to extend the lead to 6-0. Franco doubled with one out in the sixth and scored when Johnson singled to left as the Hot Rods pulled out to a 7-0 advantage. The Lugnuts added a run in the ninth against reliever Cristofer Ogando, but Bowling Green went on to claim a 7-1 victory to snap a four-game losing streak.
Liberatore (5-0) tossed seven innings of three-hit ball in a win, issuing a walk with nine strikeouts. Ogando threw two innings while allowing one run on two hits with three strikeouts.
Notes: Liberatore went a career-high seven innings... His nine strikeouts were also a career-high... Witherspoon has 16 multi-hit games... He logged his second four-hit game of the season... That ties Witherspoon's career-high... Alvarez had his fourth multi-RBI game of the year... He also had two hits in a game for the 14th time in 2019... Proctor had his 17th multi-hit effort of the season... Johnson had his 16th multi-hit game... Bowling Green is 26-13 when scoring first... They're also 31-7 when outhitting their opponents... The four-game losing streak was the longest of the season for the Hot Rods... The Hot Rods and Lugnuts face off in the final game of the first half on Sunday at 12:05 PM CDT... The Hot Rods will send All-Star RH Caleb Sampen (4-3, 3.60) to the mound against Lugnuts RHP Troy Miller (2-3, 5.29)... Fans can catch all the action with Shawn Murnin on Willie 107.9 FM, as well as, with their smart phones via the MiLB First Pitch app and TuneIn Radio app.
• Discuss this story on the Midwest League message board...
Midwest League Stories from June 15, 2019
- Liberatore K's Nine, Witherspoon Has Four Hits in 7-1 Win - Bowling Green Hot Rods
- Snappers lose heartbreaker to force rubber match tomorrow - Beloit Snappers
- Captains Even Series in Marathon Game - Fort Wayne TinCaps
- Yan, Duensing Combine for One-Hitter Victory - Burlington Bees
- Dragons Crash Party - Great Lakes Loons
- Dragons Turn the Tables on the Loons, Take a 10-Inning Victory - Dayton Dragons
- Cubs and Whitecaps Washed Away Saturday Night - South Bend Cubs
- Cougars Win on Diaz's 2nd Career Walk-Off - Kane County Cougars
- 'Caps, Cubs Canceled - West Michigan Whitecaps
- Chiefs Blown Out in Loss to Burlington - Peoria Chiefs
- Bandits Beat Timber Rattlers 5-0 in Rain-Shortened Affair - Quad Cities River Bandits
- Liberatore Quiets Lugnuts, 7-1 - Lansing Lugnuts
- Bravo & the Bandits Beat Wisconsin 5-0 - Wisconsin Timber Rattlers
- Kernels and LumberKings Suspended - Cedar Rapids Kernels
- Hot Rods Game Notes - Bowling Green Hot Rods
- TinCaps Game Notes: June 15 vs. Lake County (Game 67) - Fort Wayne TinCaps
- Bulldogs Co-Captain Talley, Blue Jays' 7th-Rounder, Joins Lugnuts - Lansing Lugnuts
- Dayton Dragons GameDay & Notes for Saturday - Dayton Dragons
- Chevy Youth Baseball Clinic June 21 - Registration Is Open - Clinton LumberKings
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.
Other Recent Bowling Green Hot Rods Stories
- Hot Rods 2020 All-Star Week Tickets on Sale Now
- Hot Rods Welcome New Coaching Staff in 2020
- Hot Rods Release 2020 Home Game Times
- Hot Rods Praise Congressional Effort to Save Minor League Baseball
- Hot Rods and Legends Announce 2020 Exhibition in Lexington, KY