Two inning-ending double plays with the bases loaded and a season-high eight walks issued by the RailCats pitching was too much for Gary to overcome in a 4-2 series-opening loss to the Winnipeg Goldeyes on Tuesday night at Shaw Park. Gary never led on the evening and is now 1-3 in the opening game of a series.
Gary (5-5) loaded the bases for the first of three times after Marcus Mooney, Randy Santiesteban and Colin Willis singled consecutively with one out in the top of the first. However, John Price. Jr. bounced into an inning-ending double play on the first pitch he saw.
Winnipeg (8-3) jumped in front 1-0 with an unearned run in the bottom of the first. Kevin Lachance reached base for the first of four times with a nine-pitch walking after following behind 0-2 in the count. Lachance then stole second before advancing to third on a Josh Romanski flyout to right. Willy Garcia then struck out looking on three pitches before Reggie Abercrombie hit a one-hopper to Mooney at short, however, Mooney’s throw skipped low past Santiesteban at first, allowing Lachance to score the game’s first run.
The Goldeyes took their biggest lead at three with two more runs in the second. Adrian Marin reached base for the first of four times with a leadoff walk before Alex Perez beat out an infield single, giving Winnipeg runners on first and second. Kevin Garcia then advanced both baserunners 90 feet with a flyout to right before Lachance doubled the Goldeyes’ lead with a sacrifice fly to right. Romanski followed Lachance with an RBI single through the right side of the infield, plating Perez for the final run of the inning.
Willis got Gary on the scoreboard with a solo homer to leadoff the fourth inning. The homer was his first of the year and the RailCats third of the season, all of which have come on the road.
The ‘Cats trimmed the Winnipeg lead to 3-2 with their final run in the top of the seventh. Tom Walraven doubled off the top of the left field wall with one out before Andy De Jesus singled to left, giving Gary runners on first and second. Mooney then walked before Santiesteban drew a seven-pitch, bases-loaded walk, scoring Walraven from third. Willis then grounded into the RailCats second inning-ending double play with the bases loaded to end the frame.
Winnipeg added their final run in the bottom of the seventh. James Harris drew a four-pitch walk before Marin doubled to right with one out, giving the Goldeyes runners on second and third. Perez then walked to load the bases before K. Garcia drove in Harris with a sacrifice fly to center.
Trevor Lubking (2-1) was charged with the loss in his first start against his former club. The southpaw went 3.1 innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on five hits and four walks while striking out two. Jumpei Akanuma tossed 2.2 scoreless innings of relief in his second consecutive appearance out of the bullpen while Ryan Thurston allowed a run over two innings in his RailCats debut.
Mitchell Lambson (2-1) recorded the win with 6.1 innings of two-run ball. The left-hander allowed 10 hits but walked none and struck out four in his third start. Joel Bender and Marcus Crescentini each recorded holds with scoreless innings out of the bullpen while Victor Capellan (4) secured the win and recorded the save with a perfect of the ninth.
Gary and Winnipeg resume their three-game series on Wednesday night at Shaw Park. Right-hander Eric Morell (0-0, 0.00) makes his first American Association road start for the RailCats while the Goldeyes have yet to announce their starter for the middle game of the series.
Gary returns home to U.S. Steel Yard on Monday, June 3rd for the first of four games vs. the Chicago Dogs. Monday’s game is the first Metro Monday and Meaty Monday of the season. Visit any Northwest Indiana Metro by T-Mobile location for complimentary tickets and enjoy our delicious hamburgers for just $2. Monday’s series opener is also Munster and Dyer Community Night, presented by Fifth Third Bank.