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 Dayton Dragons

Rivera Pitches Improving Dragons to 5-2 Win on Saturday

May 17, 2024 - Midwest League (MWL)
Dayton Dragons News Release


Dayton, Ohio - Dayton starting pitcher Javi Rivera struck out eight batters over five scoreless innings and Cam Collier blasted his eighth home run of the season as the Dragons defeated the Great Lakes Loons 5-2 on Friday night. The Dragons have won three of the first four games in the six-game series.

A crowd of 8,461 was in attendance at Day Air Ballpark in the heart of the Water Street District.

Game Recap:

The Dragons jumped out to an early lead with two runs in the second inning. Ruben Ibarra walked to start the inning and Carlos Jorge singled to right to move Ibarra to second. Victor Acosta then lined a double down the left field line to drive in both Ibarra and Jorge to make it 2-0.

The Dragons scored again in the fourth. With one out, Leo Balcazar reached on a slow roller to second base for an infield single, and Balcazar raced to third on a double down the left field line by Logan Tanner. Jay Allen II then lined a hit under the glove of the shortstop into left field to drive in both Balcazar and Tanner to make it 4-0.

In the fifth, Cam Collier hit a drive above the center field fence that was initially ruled as "in play" by the Midwest League umpires as Collier stopped at second base. The Dragons immediately argued the call, and after a conversation between the umpires, the ruling was changed to a home run. The Loons did not dispute the change of the call by the umpires. Collier's homer, his eighth of the year, gave Dayton a 5-0 lead.

Meanwhile, Javi Rivera (1-2) was exceptional, allowing just two hits and two walks over five scoreless innings while notching eight strikeouts. He completed his outing with a 5-0 lead.

"I just stuck to my plan," said Rivera. "Stuck with the process. Tried doing, honestly, what I've tried to do all year. I guess today it just worked out in my favor. Just attack the zone. Try to throw everything as hard as possible and live with the outcome."

Great Lakes scored two runs in the sixth against Dragons reliever Myles Gayman to make it 5-2. But Gayman bounced back and retired six of seven batters over the next two innings before turning it over to Brock Bell for the ninth inning. Bell pitched a scoreless ninth, allowing only a two-out single, to earn his third save.

The Dragons finished the night with eight hits. Jorge was 2 for 4 with a run scored. Along with Collier's home run, Acosta, Tanner, and Sal Stewart each had a double.

The Dragons have won four of their last five games and five of their last seven, all against the two teams that are currently tied for first place in the East Division, Lake County and Great Lakes. With the win, the Dragons are now four games out of first place.

"We're all turning the corner," said Rivera. "I think that we are really going in the right direction as a team and we're going to have a lot of success."

Up Next: The Dragons (17-20) host Great Lakes (21-16) at Day Air Ballpark in the heart of the Water Street District on Saturday night at 7:05 pm in the fifth game of the series. Kevin Abel (1-0, 2.25) will start for Dayton against Jerming Rosario (0-0, 4.60). For ticket information, go to daytondragons.com/tickets or call (937) 228-2287.

On the Air: Dragons games on Saturday and Sunday will be televised in the Miami Valley on Dayton's CW (Channel 26; Spectrum Cable channels 13 and 1013). All Dragons home and road games are broadcast on radio on FOX Sports 980 AM WONE. Games can be heard on smart phones, iPads, and other mobile devices via the free Dragons Mobile App, or on a computer at wone.com. Games are also available on HD Radio on 104.7 WTUI HD 2.


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