The TinCaps hadn’t lost consecutive games since June 15-16. But when catcher Robert Lara hit a ground ball back to Beloit pitcher Thom Wright with one out in the ninth Saturday, it sure looked as if Fort Wayne was headed that way.
Instead of a game-ending double play though, shortstop James Beresford couldn’t handle Wright’s throw and everyone was safe.
Three batters later, the TinCaps completed a three-run rally with a two-run single by Daniel Robertson. Second baseman Kevin Hansen scored the winning run on the hit to center to give Fort Wayne a thrilling 6-5 victory over the Snappers in front of a sellout crowd of 7,665 at Parkview Field.
We’re going to keep pushing until you let us in, Robertson said.
It showed with that double-play ball. We made (Beresford) hurry, (Cole Figueroa) was running hard down the line and that’s why it turned out the way it did.
The TinCaps (28-7, 73-32) entered the ninth trailing 5-3. Beresford’s error placed runners on first and second with one out.
Hansen then doubled down the left-field line. Figueroa scored, but Lara held at third after stumbling around second base.
If we don’t get (Hansen’s hit), we’re talking about coming up short two nights in a row, Robertson said, referring to Friday’s 3-2 loss.
But that’s our team; it’s not just one guy. It’s a different guy every night.
Beloit brought in Kyle Carr, who intentionally walked center fielder Blake Tekotte. Robertson worked the count full and then drilled a hit back up the middle on the ninth pitch of the at-bat. Pinch-runner Drew Cumberland scored easily, and Hansen slid home ahead of Aaron Hicks’ throw.
He threw a couple of sliders early, and I saw them good, so I was like at least I’ve seen his slider now, and I was ready for the fastball, Robertson said. When they went out to have a meeting, I knew he was going to throw a slider. I fouled it straight back, and I knew he wasn’t going to throw it again, so I could zero in on a fastball. I just kept telling myself stay up the middle, and sure enough I got the fastball.
Beloit was in control early, scoring four in the first off Mike Watt. The left-handed pitcher settled down from there. He went five innings. Watt struck out three, walked three and surrendered five hits.
Colin Lynch gave up one run in two innings, and Alexis Lara followed with two hitless innings to earn the win.
After the first inning, Watt did a good job throwing up zeros, TinCaps manager Doug Dascenzo said.
Lynch did a good job for a couple of innings, and Alexis Lara was outstanding for two innings. That gave us a chance.
Notes: Pitcher Zach Herr returned from Double-A San Antonio. Pitcher Dexter Carter, acquired as part of the Jake Peavy deal from the White Sox, will join the team today. To make room, Chris Fetter will go to Eugene.