TinCaps starter Zach Eflin did his part in Thursday's 9-5 win against Bowling Green, which vaulted Fort Wayne into the Midwest League semifinals.
His offense did, too.
Fort Wayne has had its moments of brilliance during a murky second half, when the TinCaps went 29-41 and limped into the MWL playoffs against the best team in the Eastern Division.
But then it throttled the Hot Rods, with a 15-6 margin over two games. Fort Wayne managed to find the consistency it lacked throughout the second half.
By doing so, it dominated.
"I think our offense, it's a disease right now, and it's very catchable," said Eflin, who pitched six innings with five hits, two earned runs and five strikeouts for the win Thursday. "It really sort of just kicked in. It's definitely a momentum factor when the guy in front of you does his job. Then, you have to do your job."
In the two-game sweep of the Hot Rods, every member of the TinCaps did his job.
Fort Wayne racked up 14 hits at Parkview Field, including a 3-for-4 day from shortstop Tyler Stubblefield and a 2-for-4 outing with a two-run home run from catcher Rodney Daal.
It doesn't matter how it happened, manager Jose Valentin said. What matters is that his team clicked in the crucial moment.
"Once in awhile, we chased bad pitches, but you see everybody go up there and give some good at-bats," Valentin said. "We just do what we're supposed to, and that's why we win."
TinCaps look forward to South Bend
With Bowling Green out of the way, Fort Wayne must face another Eastern Division nemesis, a team that, as Valentin put it, has had the TinCaps' number all season.
That team is South Bend, which Fort Wayne finally got a sweep against late in August. Max Fried will take the mound at 7:05 p.m. on Saturday at Parkview Field for the first in the best-of-three series against the Silver Hawks.
"These are the guys we want," Eflin said. "Those are the teams that are going to help you climb the ladder in the system. Those are the tough teams to beat, and you've really got to be on top of your game to beat them."
Valentin is confident in his team. Regardless of the regular season results, this three-game series could go either way.
Just ask the Hot Rods.
"I'm not afraid," he said. "I'll take my chances with my guys, especially the way we're playing right now. Last time we were facing them, that team in here, we just swept them. We know that they got our numbers, but like I said everything starts at zero.
"This is a new season, and anything can happen."