Comstock Park, MI – The trio of Payton Baskette, Eric Yardley, and Nick Mutz combined for a stellar afternoon of pitching Sunday in a 4-2 Fort Wayne victory over the West Michigan Whitecaps. Former Whitecap Adolfo Reina provided a go-ahead two-run home run, his second of the season against West Michigan, in the third inning to put the TinCaps ahead for good.
Baskette (3-3) pitched a career-high-tying six innings and allowed two runs while scattering seven hits. Both runs the lefthander gave up to West Michigan (2-2, 43-31) came in the second inning, with Jeff Holm notching an RBI double and Pat Leyland grounding out to score a run. After that Baskette allowed only three more hits, solidifying one of his best starts of the year.
Fort Wayne (2-2, 32-41) scored the game’s first run on a Jake Bauers RBI single in the first inning against Austin Kubitza (6-1). The TinCaps handed the right-hander his first loss of the year, scoring four runs on five hits, despite striking out seven times against him. Bauers drove home Ronnie Richardson, who had reached on one of the season-high five walks dealt by Kubitza.
Reina’s home run made it 3-2, and Bauers contributed again in the fifth with a sacrifice fly down the left-field line to increase the lead to 4-2.
Yardley, who entered the game sporting a ground ball to fly ball ratio of better than 6-to-1, pitched perfect seventh and eighth innings by getting six ground ball outs. Mutz twirled a 1-2-3 ninth innings for his eighth save of the year and second in as many days. The win was just Fort Wayne’s second in nine Sunday dates this season, and their first that was not a Sunday night game.
The TinCaps will enjoy another off day on Monday and return to action Tuesday night at 7:05 against the Dayton Dragons at Parkview Field. The scheduled starters are Walker Weickel for the TinCaps and Amir Garrett for the Dragons. The game can be seen on XFINITY 81 and heard on ESPN Radio 1380 and TheFanIndiana.com.