DAYTON, Ohio - Facing a three-game sweep at the hands of the Eastern Division's last-place team, the Fort Wayne TinCaps outdueled the Dayton Dragons, winning 6-3 on Monday night at Fifth Third Field. Fort Wayne's bullpen provided seven innings of scoreless relief, allowing just three hits, as the TinCaps salvaged the series.
Frank Garces, who had won eight of his last nine starts, allowed three runs over his two innings of work, which was his shortest outing of the season. He left in line for a loss, his team trailing, 3-1. Fort Wayne (29-21, 60-60) pulled to within one, at 3-2, in the third inning on an RBI groundout by Mike Gallic.
In the top of the sixth, Dayton (21-27, 51-67) starter Stalin Gerson (6-8) began to falter. He allowed back-to-back singles to Yeison Asencio and Lee Orr to begin the inning. Austin Hedges then laid down a bunt, which Gerson fielded, but his throw sailed over first baseman Sean Buckley, allowing Asencio to score and tie the game at three. Kyle Gaedele then walked, and Gerson was removed from the game in favor of reliever Carlos Gonzalez.
Gonzalez uncorked two wild pitches, which brought both Hedges and Gaedele in to score, and gave the TinCaps a 5-3 lead. While Fort Wayne was building its comeback, the bullpen was compiling scoreless innings. James Jones (2-3) worked three scoreless frames, Johnny Barbato twirled two more scoreless innings and Matt Stites retired the side in order in the eighth and ninth innings, earning his 12th save.
The TinCaps added their final run of the night in the eighth inning on an RBI single from Travis Jankowski. Five of the six runs scored by Fort Wayne were unearned runs, due to three errors committed by the Dragons.
Fort Wayne has the day off on Tuesday, and will begin a three-game series at Lansing on Wednesday night. The scheduled starters are Colin Rea for the TinCaps and Aaron Sanchez for the Lugnuts.