AVON, Ohio — The Lake Erie Crushers, presented by Mercy Health, dropped game three to Washington in the bottom of the 11th on a walk-off error causing them to lose the three-game series with the Wild Things.
The Crushers (19-20) fall below the .500 mark with the loss and are now 3-2 in extra-inning games this season. While the Wild Things (18-24) improve to 8-2 in their last 10 games.
Jake Repavich had his second start of the season for Lake Erie tonight. Repavich threw 5.1 innings, gave up four earned runs off of five hits, walked two and struck out six. Logan Lombana (0-1) is credited with the loss after he gave up the winning run in the bottom of the 11th inning. Jesus Balaguer (2-2) gets the win after he threw a scoreless two innings of relief.
Lake Erie was the first to score in tonight’s game. In the top of the first inning, Aaron Hill and Emmanuel Marrero hit back-to-back one out singles to put runners on first and second. Zach Racusin then advanced both runners into scoring position with a ground out. With two outs, John Cable hit a bases clearing single to give the Crushers the early 2-0 lead.
Washington answered back with a run of their own in the bottom of the first to cut the deficit down by one. Cameron Baranek hit a one out single for the Wild Things and stole second to put himself into scoring position. Repavich then walked Shaine Hughes which created a force out at every bag. With Hector Roa up, Baranek stole third to put runners at the corners. Roa then hit a groundball to Marrero at short that Marrero could not handle cleanly so, Baranek scored on the error to make it 2-1 game.
Dale Burdick launched his third homer of the year in the top of the second to make it a 3-1 Crushers lead. The score remained the same until the bottom of the fourth inning. Cody Erickson walked to lead off the inning for Washington. One batter later, Repavich hit Saige Jenco with a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Erickson and Jenco both advanced on a wild pitch thrown by Repavich during Chase Sudduth’s at-bat. Repavich would go on to strike out Sudduth for the first out of the inning. With one out and runners on second and third, Chase Slone hit an RBI ground out to score Erickson and make it a 3-2 game.
Lake Erie held the one run lead until the bottom of the sixth inning. Washington scored two runs in the home half of the inning to take a 4-3 lead. To start off the inning, JJ Fernandez hit a single off Repavich. Erickson continued to be a thorn in the side of Lake Erie’s pitching staff and hit an RBI triple to score Fernandez and tie the game. Repavich then struck out Jenco for the first out of the inning but was pulled after that. Augie Gallardo came in for relief of Repavich to face Sudduth with a runner on third and one out. With the infield playing in, Sudduth laid down a sacrifice bunt that scored Erickson. Erickson took off with the pitch and had such a great jump that by the time Gallardo picked up the ball, Erickson had already scored to give the Wild Things the lead.
Lake Erie’s offense showed resiliency and came back to tie the game in the top of the seventh inning. Aaron hill started off the inning with a single. Marrero then came up clutch for Lake Erie and hit an RBI double to score Hill and make it a 4-4 game. Marrero advanced to third off a hit from Racusin but the Crushers offense could not score him and ended the inning with back-to-back strike outs.
The Crushers had an opportunity in the top of the 11th inning to take the lead but failed to do so. Sebastian Diaz started the inning on second because of the international rule. Burdick laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Diaz 90-feet away from scoring. Bryan De La Rosa then hit a groundball back to the pitcher for the second out and Brody Wofford struck out swinging to end the inning.
In the bottom of the 11th, Logan Lombana came on to pitch for Lake Erie. With Saige Jenco on second because of the international rule, Ryan Cox hit a groundout to Aaron Hill at second to advance Jenco to third. On the next batter, Lombana was able to induce a groundout for the second out of the inning. With the winning run on third, Blake Adams hit what looked like to be an inning ending groundball to Dale Burdick at first. But Burdick misplayed the ball and the error allowed Jenco to score the winning run.
The Crushers will start a three-game series with the Windy City Thunderbolts at Ozinga Field on Friday evening. Right-hander Dylan Mouzakes (2-3, 3.04) will be on the mound for the Crushers. The Thunderbolts will go with right-hander Austin Jones (1-2, 4.54). The first pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM.
The Lake Erie Crushers, the 2009 Frontier League Champions, and 2011 Frontier League Organization of the year, play ball at Sprenger Health Care Stadium, a 5,000 capacity stadium located in Avon, Ohio. The Frontier League is an independent baseball league with 10 teams operating throughout the Midwest. For more information on tickets, promotions and team news, visit the team website at www.LakeErieCrushers.com or call 440-934-3636.