Loons rally past Dragons


DAYTON, Ohio – The Great Lakes Loons scored three runs with two outs in the ninth inning to come from behind and defeat the Dayton Dragons 6-4 on Thursday night. The Loons have won the first two games of the series.

Cincinnati Reds 2019 first round draft pick Nick Lodolo made his Midwest League debut as the starting pitcher for the Dragons, working three innings and throwing 43 pitches. Lodolo allowed one run on three hits with no walks and five strikeouts. He utilized an effective mix of fastballs in the 94-95 mph range along with a good slider. Lodolo is scheduled to pitch again on Tuesday, July 30 at Fifth Third Field.

Reds catcher/infielder Kyle Farmer started the game for the Dragons on an MLB injury rehab assignment after being cleared in the concussion protocol. Farmer played five innings and played well defensively, throwing out a base stealer in his only opportunity. He also made a tag play at the plate as a runner tried to score from second base on a base hit to left field, ending the inning when the runner was called out. At the plate, Farmer walked in the first inning and flied out to right in each of his two subsequent at-bats.

Dayton reliever Eddy Demurias was within one strike of closing out a Dragons victory. With Great Lakes batting and two outs in the ninth inning, runners at first and third, and a 1-2 count, Loons catcher Gersel Pitre delivered an infield single to drive in the tying run, and Dan Robinson followed with a two-run double to give Great Lakes a 6-4 lead.

The Dragons built a 4-1 lead over the first four innings, scoring two runs in the first, one in the second, and one in the fourth. Three of the four runs scored on plays involving errors. Randy Ventura’s run-scoring single brought in the other.

But the Dragons did not have a base runner after the fifth inning as their final 13 batters were retired, including nine on strikeouts.

The Dragons finished the night with four hits. Ventura’s RBI hit extended his hitting streak to seven straight games. Miguel Hernandez had a double, the team’s only extra base hit.

Up Next: The Dragons (14-18, 42-60) host the Loons (18-14, 61-38) in the last game of a three-game series on Friday at 7:05 p.m. at Fifth Third Field. Connor Curlis (3-3, 3.63) will start for the Dragons. Stephen Kolek (6-6, 4.98) will start for Great Lakes. Friday’s game will be televised on Dayton’s CW (channel 26; Spectrum cable channels 13 and 1013).

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