'Caps, CT-Tigers Both Drop Playoff Opener

The minor league playoffs got underway on Wednesday, with both clubs in the Tigers organization participating coming up on the losing end in excruciating fashion. Connecticut went into extra innings, while a controversial no-call did in the Whitecaps.

MiLB Scores

A West Michigan Whitecaps
0-1, Best of 3 series vs. Fort Wayne, Midwest League Quarterfinal

Team R H E
West Michigan 5 7 1
Fort Wayne 7 13 2

  • The Whitecaps suffered a tough break in the series opener against Fort Wayne, and in turn took the loss by a score of 7-5. In the bottom of the eighth inning, with the score tied at 5, shortstop Domingo Leyba dove for a ball in play with the bases loaded, where he collided with a baserunner, which the ‘Caps believed, and manager Andrew Graham argued, should have been baserunner interference. The call wasn’t made however, the go-ahead runs scored, and the Whitecaps couldn’t recover.

  • Austin Kubitza got the start and took a no-decision for the ‘Caps, giving up five runs (four earned) on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings of work. He also struck out five and walked two. Luke Putkonen, pitching in a rehab appearance, tossed a scoreless inning of relief in the seventh, but was the one that loaded the bases in the eighth when the interference happened and ultimately took the loss.

  • Domingo Leyba belted a solo shot for West Michigan, while Wynton Bernard added a three-run blast in the fifth inning that put the ‘Caps up 5-2. Bernard finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored.

  • The ‘Caps will try and knot the series at one game apiece when they return home on Thursday evening to face Fort Wayne. Left hander Kevin Ziomek gets the ball for West Michigan, with the game slated to start at 7PM.

SS-A Connecticut Tigers
0-1, Best of 3 series vs. Tri-City, New York-Penn League Semifinal

Team R H E
Tri-City 3 6 0
Connecticut 2 10 5

  • The CT-Tigers lost a heartbreaker on Wednesday, falling to Tri-City at home in 11 innings, when Paul Voelker allowed a leadoff double to eventually score on a sacrifice fly. In the bottom half of the inning, Connecticut got the tying man into scoring position and the winning run on base, but Brett Pirtle grounded out to the end the threat and the game. The club was plagued by defensive miscues throughout the game, committing five errors, including two from third baseman Joey Pankake. A pair of errors in the fourth inning allowed Tri-City’s second run to score when one error put a man in scoring position, and the next let him score via an errant throw that extended the inning.

  • Confesor Lara got the start and pitched well, allowing two runs, one earned,in seven innings of work. He also struck out seven. Josh Laxer added two scoreless innings of relief, and Johan Belisario pitched a scoreless inning as well in the tenth.

  • The CT-Tigers managed ten hits, including three extra base hits, but could only muster two runs out of those opportunities as the club went a painful 1-for-16 with runners in scoring position. Will Maddox had two hits including a triple and a run driven in, while Franklin Navarro added two hits, including a double.

  • Connecticut now hits the road for game two of the best of three series, with righty Austin Pritcher taking the mound for the CT-Tigers. Action gets underway Thursday at 7PM.

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