Jesse Winker, Junior Arias, and Seth Mejias-Brean all belted home runs as the Dayton Dragons defeated the South Bend Silver Hawks 7-4 on Friday night. The Dragons have now won five of their last six games in South Bend against the first place Silver Hawks.
Dragons starting pitcher Nick Travieso, the Cincinnati Reds #1 pick in 2012, worked the first five innings and earned his first professional win. He allowed one run on four hits with two walks and two strikeouts.
The Dragons trailed 1-0 in the sixth inning and had not advanced a runner past first base in the game when Sammy Diaz singled with two outs and Winker followed with a two-run home run to right field to give the Dragons a 2-1 lead. It was Winker's ninth of the year. Later in that same inning, Arias connected on a three-run home run to left field to make it 5-1. Arias' homer was his seventh. Mejias-Brean blasted a long homer to left in the eighth as the Dragons jumped out to a 7-2 lead.
South Bend made things closer in the bottom of the ninth inning when Ronnie Freeman hit a two-run home run to make it 7-4. Sean Lucas came out of the Dragons bullpen to strike out the only batter he faced with the tying run in the on-deck circle to end the game as Lucas notched his ninth save.
Mike Saunders replaced Travieso in the sixth and made his Midwest League debut. He tossed two innings, allowing three hits and one run with no walks and three strikeouts. Alejandro Chacin followed Saunders and went one and two-thirds innings, allowing three hits and two runs with no walks and two strikeouts.
The Dragons finished with nine hits. Diaz, who joined the Dragons on Thursday, collected three hits and a walk in his first game. Mejias-Brean had two hits and extended his hitting streak to nine straight games, matching the longest of the season for a Dayton player.
The Dragons battle the Silver Hawks again on Saturday at 7:05 p.m. in the second game of the three-game series. Drew Cisco (2-4, 4.12) will start for Dayton against South Bend's Jesse Darrah (6-4, 3.78). All Dragons games can be heard on WONE Radio (980 AM) and via the internet at daytondragons.com and wone.com.