Lansing, MICHIGAN - Lansing’s Kevin Smith singled through the middle to bring in the winning run from second base with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning as the Lugnuts defeated the Dayton Dragons 4-3 on Monday night. The loss was the fourth straight for the Dragons.
Dayton fell behind 2-0, rallied to tie the game in the sixth and took a 3-2 lead with a run in the seventh. But Smith blasted a game-tying home run in the eighth and then came through again in the ninth to win it for Lansing.
Trailing 2-0 in the top of the sixth, Dayton’s Michael Beltre reached on an infield single and scored from first on Stuart Fairchild’s double to make it 2-1. Fairchild went to third on Montrell Marshall’s ground out and scored on John Sansone’s double to the fence in left-center to tie the game.
In the seventh, Jeter Downs led off with a triple for the Dragons, and Andy Sugilio followed with a single to center field to drive him in and give the Dragons a 3-2 lead.
But Smith’s lead-off home run in the eighth tied the game. In the bottom of the ninth, Dragons reliever Austin Orewiler retired the first two batters before allowing a bloop single to Chavez Young. With Smith at the plate, Young stole second. Smith, the league leader in RBI, hits, extra base hits, total bases, slugging percentage, and the reigning Midwest League Batter of the Week, then grounded a single through the middle to bring in Young to end the game.
Orewiler (3-2) was charged with the loss. He worked three and two-thirds innings, allowing two runs on four hits with one walk and five strikeouts. Dragons starting pitcher Andrew Jordan, in his first game of the year, pitched well. He fired five good innings, allowing two unearned runs on six hits with two walks and four strikeouts. The Dragons committed three errors and had a passed ball that allowed a run to score as two of Lansing’s four runs were unearned.
The Dragons collected 11 hits. Fairchild had three doubles, one short of the league record. Sugilio also had three hits for Dayton, while Beltre had two.
In the Standings: The Dragons fell to 18-16 with the loss. They are in third place in the Midwest League East Division, four and one-half games behind first place Lansing and three games behind second place Bowling Green.
Up Next: The Dragons continue their series in Lansing with the second game of the set on Tuesday morning at 10:35 a.m. Adrian Rodriguez (1-0, 1.50) will start for Dayton against Colton Laws (1-2, 7.20).
The Dragons next home date is Friday, May 18 when they host the Great Lakes Loons in a doubleheader at Fifth Third Field. The first game will start at 7:00 p.m. Both games will be seven-inning games.
Game Broadcast: All Dragons games are broadcast on radio on Fox Sports 980 WONE and on the internet at wone.com. Games are also available on the Dayton Dragons mobile app.
For Dragons 2018 ticket information, call (937) 228-2287.
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