LANSING, MI – The West Michigan Whitecaps missed out on their chance to give the franchise its 2,000th win as part of a 5-3 loss to the Lansing Lugnuts in front of 6,434 fans at Jackson Field on Saturday night.
The loss means that the Whitecaps, who needed wins in each of their final two games, will be unable to win their 2,000th game until the 2022 season and gives the Lugnuts the victory in the season series, which currently sits at 13-10 in favor of Lansing. The defeat extends West Michigan’s losing streak to four games, in which they’ve hit a combined 2-for-30 with runners in scoring position.
For the second straight game, the ‘Caps took the early lead on an RBI-single by Gage Workman before Lansing responded in the bottom of the frame with a Lawrence Butler solo home run to tie the game at one. After scoring a run in the third, the ‘Caps extended the lead to 3-1 on a single by Jake Holton that scored Wenceel Perez due to a fielding error by Lansing right fielder Jalen Greer. In the fifth, the Lugnuts scored two runs on a Perez throwing error to tie the game. The error was Perez’s 20th of the season. In the sixth, Jonny Butler gave Lansing the lead for good with a solo home run, his first with the Lugnuts to take a 4-3 advantage. In the seventh, Lawrence Butler added a run-scoring single to give Lansing an insurance run and a 5-3 lead.
Kyle Virbitsky (1-2) tossed 2.1 innings giving up an unearned run in collecting his first win with the Lugnuts, while Michael Bienlien (3-2) suffered his second loss after surrendering two runs in two innings of relief. Charles Hall tossed a scoreless ninth inning for Lansing to earn his 12th save with the Lugnuts. The Whitecaps record falls to 57-62 as the Lugnuts record improves to 58-61. A win in the season finale would allow them to finish in a fourth-place tie with the Lansing Lugnuts to conclude the 2021 season.
The Whitecaps finish the 2021 regular season against the Lansing Lugnuts with a Sunday matinee at 1:05 pm. West Michigan will start pitcher Austin Bergner against the Lugnuts Osvaldo Berrios. Broadcast coverage with Dan Hasty begins on the Whitecaps Baseball Network at 12:50 pm.Get all the latest Whitecaps news at www.whitecapsbaseball.com.