EASTLAKE, Ohio – On another frigid night, the TinCaps again rallied late but came up short in a 3-2 loss to the Lake County Captains on Friday at Classic Park.
Lake County (2-0) struck for two runs in the bottom of the first inning and tacked on another in the third. Captains pitching, meanwhile, quieted the TinCaps (0-2) until the late innings, when Fort Wayne grabbed a run in the eighth and one more in the ninth.
A night after overcoming a four-run and separate three-run deficit in a losing effort, Fort Wayne fell to Lake County again.
Lake County starter Casey Shane racked up seven strikeouts in five shutout frames, while right-handed reliever Cortland Cox allowed just one run in three innings.
Fort Wayne’s bullpen shined on an overcast evening. Left-hander Will Headean logged 1.2 scoreless stanzas with a pair of strikeouts. Righty J.C. Cosme, who was acquired by the Padres in February from the Orioles, followed with four shutout innings in his organizational debut.
The TinCaps grabbed one run in the top of the eighth when center fielder Michael Gettys stroked an RBI single to center to plate second baseman Peter Van Gansen, who led off the frame with a base knock. Van Gansen (two walks) reached base all three trips to the plate.
Fort Wayne catcher Austin Allen floated a pinch-hit, run-scoring single to center field in the ninth to reel in designated hitter River Stevens and slice the margin to one.
TinCaps starter Austin Smith, who was San Diego’s second-round draft pick in June, tossed 2.1 innings in his full-season debut.
The home-and-home series continues Saturday and Sunday in Fort Wayne. The TinCaps’ home opener at Parkview Field begins Saturday at 6:05 p.m. Fort Wayne right-hander Brett Kennedy will oppose Captains lefty Sam Hentges. The game can be heard on ESPN Radio 1380, 100.9 FM, TinCapsRadio.com and the TuneIn Radio App.