Spencer Torkelson crushes walkoff homer for the Mud Hens

Bless You Boys

Toledo Mud Hens 4, Omaha Storm Chasers 3 (box)

Eduardo Rodriguez had no trouble carving up the Storm Chasers in his rehab start, but after the bullpen blew a save, it was Spencer Torkelson coming through with a walkoff blast. The Storm Chasers are now down 3-0 in the six-game set.

Rodriguez was nearly untouchable, allowing just one hit and a walk, striking out six over five innings of work. 39 of 53 pitches went for strikes. Wouldn’t be surprised if he was back in Detroit shortly even if required a short outing the first time out. It’s been a bizarre series of events with him, and he’s got work to do to win over the fanbase for certain, but I loved the signing and still hope to see some really good work from him in the years ahead. In the meantime, the Tigers really need him to take a spot in the rotation down the stretch while they make absolutely certain Tarik Skubal and Beau Brieske are 100 percent before returning to action.

Last night, Joey Wentz put together a quality outing for the Hens as well, so there is rotation help inbound at last. Austin Meadows has also played a few games now without a recurrence of injury, so that’s a positive sign. Be nice to see the planned 2022 Tigers at some point down the stretch.

The offense built an early lead but squandered some chances. Singles from Torkelson and Daz Cameron in the second inning were followed by back-to-back walks for Zack Short and Andre Lipcius, forcing in a run, though the next two hitters struck out with the bases juiced.

In the third, Ryan Kreidler led off with a double and scored on an error on a ball Torkelson pulled to the third baseman. Josh Lester’s 19th homer for the Hens made it 3-0 in the seventh. However, Chi Chi Gonzalez gave up two walks and a three-run shot in the top of the ninth to blow the save in awful fashion.

Fortunately, Mr. Torkelson had a ready remedy, leading off the bottom of the ninth with a shot to left center field to put this one to bed. He needed this, and more.

Torkelson: 2-4, 2 R, RBI, HR, BB, SO

Kreidler: 2-5, R, 2B, 2 SO

Rodriguez: 5.0 IP, 0 R, H, BB, 6 SO

Coming Up Next: RHP Austin Bergner takes on LHP Drew Parrish on Friday night at Fifth Third Field.

Erie SeaWolves 5, New Hampshire Fisher Cats 1 (box)

Sawyer Gipson-Long was good again in this one, while Parker Meadows continued to build on recent momentum with another strong showing as the SeaWolves took down the Fisher Cats.

The newest Tigers’ farmhand, acquired for Michael Fulmer last week, put together his second strong showing in his new organization. The right-hander tossed five innings of one run ball without a walk, collecting four strikeouts.

While the Fisher Cats struggled with Gipson-Long, the SeaWolves offense didn’t come out firing on all cylinders either. Through the first three innings, Erie collected just two singles and both runners erased themselves on the basepaths. Finally in the fourth, Meadows and Quincy Nieporte doubled back-to-back, and Dillon Dingler singled home Nieporte to make it 2-0. Daniel Cabrera doubled home Luis Carpio in the fifth.

Parker Meadows led off the sixth with his 11th home run of the year, and the SeaWolves were in cruise control from there. Meadows work to simplify his swing seems to be paying some dividends. After struggling badly in May, he’s been much better and is raking to a 1.113 OPS in August so far. Progress, at least.

Carpio led off the seventh with a double, and advanced the rest of the way home on two wild pitches from Jake Elliott, the Fisher Cats’ reliever. Lefty Adam Wolf shut the door with three scoreless frames of relief to earn his first save.

Meadows: 2-3, 2 R, RBI, HR, 2B, BB

Carpio: 2-4, 2 R, 2B, SO

Gipson-Long: 5.0 IP, ER, 6 H, 0 BB, 4 SO

Coming Up Next: RHP Reese Olson (4-5, 4.71 ERA) takes on LHP Ricky Tiedemann on Friday night. The SeaWolves, like the Mud Hens, will be looking for their fourth straight win in this week’s series.

Beloit Sky Carp 4, West Michigan Whitecaps 2 (box)

Brent Hurter’s outing went very well for five innings, but he and the bullpen crumbled a bit in the sixth, and the offense had no answers in this one.

The Whitecaps’ offense got the scoring started in the third. Jose King doubled with one out and took third on a wild pitch. Cooper Johnson struck out, but Esney Chacon singled King home. Jace Jung then slashed a double the opposite way to score Chacon.

As for Hurter, he allowed just one run over five inning, but allowed a two-out double with a runner on first that tied the game at two apiece. He then departed and Gio Arriera came on in relief and was terrible. Two straight singles were followed by two straight walks, and when the smoke cleared it was 4-2 Beloit. The Whitecaps didn’t muster another threat until the ninth when both Jung and Josh Crouch struck out with runners in scoring position to end it.

Jung: 1-4, RBI, 2B, BB, 2 SO

Cruz: 2-4, SO, SB

Chacon: 1-5, R, RBI

Hurter (L, 4-1): 5.2 IP, 3 R, 2 ER, 5 H, 5 SO

Coming Up Next: LHP Jack O’Loughlin (2-1, 3.97 ERA) gets the start on Friday night.

Lakeland Flying Tigers 4, Daytona Tortugas 2 (box)

The Flying Tigers took a 2-1 series lead on Thursday night behind a good start from Garrett Burhenn, and got offensive contributions from all the prospects.

Burhenn allowed a pair of runs in the first after loading the bases. A throwing error from Peyton Graham made one of them unearned, but Burhenn definitely created his own mess. From that point on he locked in and dominated the Tortugas for six innings, allowing just one more hit and a walk while racking up seven strikeouts.

The Flying Tigers offense had their chances but didn’t score until Iverson Leonardo and Graham walked with one out. Manuel Sequera ripped a double to left to score them both and tie the game.

In the top of the ninth, Adinso Reyes and Graham led off with singles, and after Sequera flew out, this time it was Roberto Campos with the two-run double. Blake Holub collected his second save in the bottom half.

Campos: 2-5, 2 RBI, 2B, SO

Graham: 1-3, 2 R, 2 BB, SO

Santana: 0-2, 3 BB, SO

Burhenn: 6.0 IP, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 H, 3 BB, 7 SO

Coming Up Next: It’s a 7:05 p.m. EDT start at Jackie Robinson Ballpark in Daytona Beach on Friday night.

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