vs. Bowling Green
When: 7:05 p.m. today
TV: Xfinity Channel 81
Radio: 1380 AM
Tickets: $12.50, $10, $9, $8, $5 (lawn)
Information: TinCaps.com or 482-6400
A rain delay couldn’t cool off Fort Wayne’s hot bats.
The TinCaps scored four runs in the first inning on the way to an 8-3 victory against Bowling Green in front of 4,831 fans Thursday at Parkview Field.
Matt Colantonio had three singles and two RBI. Mike Gallic had two hits, Zach Kometani had a two RBI and a single as the TinCaps (10-4, 41-43 overall) won for the eighth time in 10 games.
“The way we’re playing right now, they feel like they can’t wait to get onto the field,” TinCaps manager Jose Valentin said. “We’re having fun lately the way we’re playing. We’re winning and when you’re winning, it’s fun to play baseball.”
The game started after a rain delay of 1 hour, 6 minutes.
Both starting pitchers struggled early. Only the TinCaps were able to take advantage of the other pitcher’s wildness.
Bowing Green (7-7, 45-39) starting pitcher Trevor Shull walked the first three batters he faced – Travis Jankowski, Jace Peterson and Mike Gallic – during a four-run first for the TinCaps.
Jankowski scored when Yeison Asencio grounded out to third. Peterson and Gallic moved up a base on the play.
Shull struck out Whitmore for the second out.
Kometani then came through with a single to left. Peterson and Gallic scored to make it 3-0.
“The guy was throwing me a lot of off-speed that at-bat,” Kometani said. “It was 3-2 and I wasn’t going to spend it looking for a fastball because I figured he was throwing curveballs the whole time.
“He hung me a curveball 3-2 and I put good contact on it and got a nice hit.”
Kometani later scored on a single by Colantonio to make it 4-0.
“They didn’t hesitate,” Valentin said of the fast start. “They went out there and threw the first punch.”
Fort Wayne starting pitcher Adys Portillo walked two batters in the first inning, and five in his five innings, but was able to work out of trouble throughout his outing.
Portillo gave up one run, which was unearned, and one hit. He improved to 6-5 and lowered his Midwest League-leading ERA to 1.65.
“He was great,” Colantonio said. “It’s scary, but he didn’t have his best stuff, which is incredible. His fastball was a little up, the end of his outing he was a little out of sync, pushing a little too much. But it was a great outing.”
Bowling Green scored a run in the fifth. The TinCaps came back with two in the bottom of the inning. Jankowski knocked in both when Josh Sale misjudged his fly ball to left and it fell in behind him for a double.
The TinCaps added two more in the sixth. Colantonio had an RBI single in the inning. He added his third single in the eighth.
“I just got fastballs to hit. I’m a fastball guy and when you’re first (at-bat) you can have a nice line drive into left field, it builds your confidence for the rest of the time,” Colantonio said.
The TinCaps are playing with confidence.
“Guys can’t wait to the next day to come back and do it again,” Valentin said. “It’s a great feeling.”