Winker, Arredondo Send Loons to Walk Off Win

Not many people know the name Jesus Alberto Arredondo. But after the Great Lakes Loons (3-5) wild 5-4 ninth inning walk-off win Friday night against the Fort Wayne Tin Caps (3-5), the town of Midland, Mich. and the Los Angeles Dodgers organization should get to know him.

Arredondo went three-for-five in the win Friday boosting his average to a Midwest League best .462 hitting a single, double and triple, scored the winning run and made a game saving out at home plate that kept the game tied at four in the ninth inning.

"Baseball is the same everywhere," Arredondo said. Before this season Arredondo was playing professionally in his home country of Mexico. It wasn't until last season when Great Lakes head coach John Shoemaker first caught a glimpse of the exciting infielder.

"We saw Jesus last year for the first time in the Dodgers instructional league and didn't know a whole lot about him other than he played in the winter league in Mexico," Shoemaker said. "He has a knack for putting the good part of the bat on the ball and he's an exciting player."

Arredondo isn't perfect however; he committed an error that allowed the leadoff hitter to get on base and later score and forced the bottom of the ninth.

But he made up for it later in the inning with one out and a runner on third made a great throw to get the runner out at home maintaining the four all tie.

"It was a lack of concentration," Arredondo said. "I knew I was going home."

With that play Arredondo allowed the opportunity for first baseman Joseph Winker to hit the winning RBI in the ninth to take the 5-4 win.

"They had been giving me a lot of off-speed stuff all night so I was looking for something off-speed," Winker said.

Before his walk-off hit, Winker was one of six Loons batters to be under the dreaded Mendoza Line (.200) but he hopes that with this wild win the confidence will rise along with the batting averages.

"We have had a lot of guys hit good balls at people and on some days they fall and some days they don't," Winker said. "The last four games we've been a lot better."

The hitting isn't the only thing getting better in the last four games. The bullpen has allowed just one earned run in the last 23 1/3 innings of work.

"We felt coming to the season that they (the bullpen) would keep a lot of teams close to us because I didn't think we'd get a lot of runs," Shoemaker said.

The Loons will be looking to take the series lead tomorrow afternoon but they'll be without catcher Pratt Maynard who suffered an injured left hand in Friday night's game.