Record-setting Siri gets a rest as Dragons lose again

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Record-setting Siri gets a rest as Dragons lose again

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Dragons starter Tony Santillian pitches during the fifth inning Saturday against Lansing at Fifth Third Field. Lansing won 4-1, extending the Dragons’ losing streak to eight. BRYANT BILLING / CONTRIBUTED

The Dragons squandered an early lead and lost 4-1 to the Lansing Lugnuts on Saturday at Fifth Third Field. It’s the eighth-straight loss for Dayton, which is 13-29 since the Midwest League All-Star break and 54-58 overall.

Bruce Yari hit a home run to center field in the first, but Lansing tied it in the seventh and took the lead in the eighth with three runs off relivers Carlos Machorro and Joel Kuhnel.

Dragons starter Tony Santillan had another good outing as he allowed four hits and one run in six innings.

Jose Siri had the night off. His Midwest League-record 39-game hitting streak was snapped Friday night after he went 0 for 3 with a controversial eighth-inning walk. The streak is the longest in professional baseball this season.

Dragons tales: Manager Luis Bolivar didn’t get to see Siri’s hitting streak end in person Friday, but he was plenty flabbergasted watching the play of the Great Lakes Loons on television.

During Siri’s last at-bat in the eighth, Great Lakes’ Ryan Moseley threw a pitch behind Siri’s back and also nearly hit him with a pitch near his elbow. After the count grew to 3-2, Moseley threw a low outside pitch in the dirt to complete the walk.

Bolivar had been ejected immediately prior to Siri’s last at-bat for arguing a strike call but watched on TV in the clubhouse. He said he was disappointed Moseley and some Great Lakes players yelled at Siri as he walked to first base.

“They should have given him a chance to see if they can actually stop the hitting streak the right way, see if they can get him out,” Bolivar said before Saturday’s game. “They chose that way. I don’t know what they were thinking.”

Loons manager Jeremy Rodriguez said after Friday’s game there was no ill intention in the at-bat and that the team was trying to protect a 4-1 lead with the top of the Dragons’ batting order up.

“Moseley, his ball runs a lot,” Rodriguez said. “There’s a lot of movement on his fastball. I think he was just trying to get something down in the zone and make sure that he couldn’t get any cheap hits or anything up in the zone. He battled, he showed a lot of heart out there and he competed.”

Bolivar gave credit to Siri for withstanding the heckling from Loons players. Both dugouts cleared, but no altercations ensued. Siri yelled back at Moseley as he walked to first base but said nothing once he reached the bag and didn’t move when the dugouts emptied.

Siri was stepped on by a West Michigan player on May 28 after he stole a base, and he tried to punch the player. Both benches emptied in that game, and a brawl ensued.

“I’m very, very proud of him, the way he acted,” Bolivar said of Siri. “He didn’t let his emotions take over. He kept his cool.”

Bolivar said Siri isn’t resentful for the way the streak ended.

“He’s been very humble about it and proud of it but he’s focused on getting better,” Bolivar said.

On deck: Andrew Jordan (5-7, 4.74 ERA) will start for the Dragons opposite Patrick Murphy (3-2, 2.64) on Sunday afternoon in the second game of a four-game series.

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