MIDLAND, MI – The West Michigan Whitecaps got behind early and never recovered as part of an 11-0 loss to the Great Lakes Loons in front of a season-high 3,896 fans on Saturday night at Dow Diamond.
The Whitecaps now hold a 4-7 record against Great Lakes this season, while they’re 12-5 against the rest of the High-A Central League.
The Loons controlled play from start to finish on Saturday night while taking advantage of a stiff wind blowing out to aid in four Great Lakes home runs. In the first, Andy Pages launched his third home run of the series and eighth of the season as part of a three-run first inning to take a 3-0 lead. Ryan Ward followed suit with a solo shot of his own in the third before James Outman’s run-scoring triple gave the Loons a 5-0 advantage after four frames. Zac Ching delivered a run-scoring single in the fifth and brought home two more with a home run in the seventh. The blast for Ching was his third of the season – all of which have come against West Michigan. Finally, in the eighth, Ward blasted a two-run shot, his fourth of the year, to conclude the scoring and give the Loons their 11-0 lead. Ward’s homer was his second of the night and his third against the ‘Caps this season. Meanwhile, the ‘Caps offense only mustered four hits against Loons pitching and were held without an extra-base hit in the contest.
Whitecaps starting pitcher Chance Kirby (2-2) gave up a season-high four earned runs in three innings to take his second loss of the season. Loons starter and Los Angeles Dodgers 2020 first-rounder Bobby Miller tossed four innings of scoreless baseball, while reliever Jose Martinez (2-1) tossed three innings of relief to collect his second win. The Whitecaps record falls 16-12 while the Loons improve to 15-14. Spencer Torkelson went 2-for-3 with a pair of singles and was hit by a pitch in a losing cause.
The Whitecaps and Loons conclude this six-game series from Dow Diamond Sunday at 1:05 pm. West Michigan sends pitcher Beau Brieske to the mound, while the Loons will use righty Clayton Beeter for the first inning of Sunday’s tilt. Broadcast coverage with Dan Hasty begins on the Whitecaps Baseball Network at 12:50 pm. Get your tickets for all 2021 home games now at www.whitecapsbaseball.com.