Tuesday, July 18, 2023
Evansville, IL – The Lake Erie Crushers dropped the opener in a three-game-set versus the Evansville Otters by a final score of 6-4.
The Crushers (23-32) tie for their worst mark of the season at nine games below .500 as the Otters (31-23) gain another step in securing the third seed for the playoff race.
Lake Erie fell behind early, came back but gave up the lead late in another frustrating loss. The team has now dropped five of their last seven games dating back to the last series before the All-Star break.
Evansville jumped on the board first with a two-run home run. They added one more in the next inning on another blast over the fence to make it a 3-0 score.
The Crushers woke the bats up in the fifth inning. Drue Galassi homered over the right field wall to get Lake Erie on the board.
In the next frame, Todd Isaacs Jr. laid down a bunt single to score John Tuccillo, which was then followed by a Kenen Irizarry single which brought home Jack Harris.
After a pitching change, Zach Racusin put down a sacrifice bunt, which scored Issacs Jr. Just like that, the Crushers were on top 4-3.
Things were quiet until the bottom of the eighth inning – and all of a sudden, the wheels fell off the bus for Lake Erie.
A two-out walk later led to a pair of runs scoring on a triple from Evansville, and the lead was given up. The nail in the coffin was a single to left field which scored another Otter, making it 6-4 and sealing the fate of the Grapes.
Lake Erie had a chance to tie it in the ninth inning, but couldn’t capitalize on a golden opportunity. They had runners at second and third with no one out and then went one-two-three on a pair of strikeouts and a pop-out.
Brayden Bonner (1-3) took the loss after giving up three runs in the eighth. Yasel Santana started and went 5.0 innings allowing three runs on double the hits.
Kevin Davis (1-1) earned the win after pitching a scoreless frame in the top of the inning, with Jake Polancic picking up his ninth save after slamming the door shut on Lake Erie.
The Crushers will look to even the series versus the Otters and nap a two-game skid tomorrow. The first pitch will be at 6:35 PM CDT.