TinCaps manager Jose Valentin has borne one face throughout the second half of the season.
Its a grimace – and deservedly so.
Fort Wayne is 14-25 in the second half, and the TinCaps are a league-worst 3-7 in their last 10 games.
The former major league shortstop is just as competitive as he was during his career. He pulls no punches in news conferences.
And here are some of the highlights from the second half, which has featured some bad baseball from the TinCaps and honest commentary from Valentin.
July 31, after a 10-9 loss to Lake County: They pretty much quit on it. I dont think that we have the guts to (turn the second half around). Weve got some guys in here who are too soft, too soft for this game of baseball – mentally, physically, I dont think they have the heart to do it.
July 22, after an 11-4 loss to Cedar Rapids: We never got the hits when we need them with men in scoring position. We tied the game, but we tied it with an E6. Same inning, we got second and third with one out. Strikeout, fly out to end the inning. Cant get the guy in with less than two outs. Thats the difference. Its frustrating.
July 18, after an 8-3 win against Quad Cities: (Starting pitcher Max) Fried, pretty much, was bad. He was bad. His tempo – working too slow. Working behind the count. Lucky he made the pitches when he had to. I hated playing with a guy like that. Its tough to be on your feet when a guys behind the count.
July 17, after a 4-3 loss to Quad Cities: When youre not playing the way youre supposed to be, youre not going to win some ballgames. To be able to win three in a row, or at least win more games, we just got to play better baseball overall – pitching, hitting and playing defense. Were not doing that.
July 7, after an 8-4 loss against Great Lakes: The games not over in one inning. You got to continue to play the game hard. I guess they made excuses, they pretty much quit on it. I didnt see any more intensity after (a blown call by the umpire). We never really, after that, had any good hitting. We didnt put any pressure on it. I was trying to keep the guys in the game, but I guess theres not too much I can do.
TinCaps win on road
The TinCaps coughed up an early three-run lead Friday night but didnt get rattled, defeating the Lake County Captains 7-5 in Eastlake, Ohio.
The TinCaps had an early 3-0 lead, but it had melted into a 4-3 deficit by the seventh inning, when Alberth Martinez had a home run to tie it.
Luis Domoromos RBI double in the eighth gave Fort Wayne the lead.
And Gabriel Quintana and Domoromo drove in two more runs in the ninth for needed security.
Prior to their game, pitcher Joe Church was placed on the disabled list, making room for the now-healthy Roman Madrid, who got his 16th save.