It’s part of the learning experience at the Class-A level.
The TinCaps received a failing grade in that department in Monday’s 9-3 loss to Dayton in front of 2,547 fans at Parkview Field.
It was an ugly game, TinCaps manager Jose Valentin said. They scored three runs without a hit. It’s one of the ugliest games I’ve seen so far.
We can’t win like that. They are young, they are going to continue to make mistakes. But those are bad mistakes. Today we played like a little league team.
The momentum turned on two bunt attempts.
Dayton’s Nick O’Shea got a bunt down in the fifth inning. Fort Wayne first baseman Zach Kometani fielded the ball and threw wildly to third base. Two runs scored on the error and O’Shea made it to third when no one covered the base. O’Shea later scored when Frank Garces was called for a balk to give the Dragons a 3-1 lead. Garces gave up two earned runs on three hits and walked six in 4 1/3 innings.
He was a different guy than I’ve seen in a long time, Valentin said. He was wild, he was out of rhythm, he looked like he had no clue what was going on on the mound. He balked with a man on third from the stretch. You could see right there that he wasn’t in the game.
Fort Wayne had a chance to get back in the game in the seventh inning. Kyle Gaedele knocked in a run with a double to make it 4-2. Corey Adamson followed with a walk.
Matt Colantonio was called on to bunt. The catcher got behind 0-2 and eventually bunted foul for the third strike.
Jace Peterson reached on an error later in the inning to load the bases with two outs. But Donavan Tate struck out to end the inning.
Dayton (5-6) scored twice in the eighth inning and three more times in the ninth to break the game open.
Fort Wayne (3-8) lost its fourth consecutive game.
It’s kind of frustrating, said Gaedele, who went 2 for 4 with a home run and two RBI. We’re right there. We’re a very talented team. We’re on the edge of doing great things. We just have to keep battling and grinding it out.
Fort Wayne went 1 for 12 with runners in scoring position.
It’s a long season, Valentin said. We have a lot of time to work on it (the mistakes). They’re fighting. You can tell they’re pressing. They are trying too hard. You have to stay away from that. You have to try to play the game relaxed.