The Lake County Captains scored the tie-breaking run in the eighth inning and held off a Dayton comeback bid in the ninth and defeated the host Dragons 3-2 on Monday night at Fifth Third Field.
The game was the opener to a five-game series that include a suspended doubleheader on Tuesday night.
The Dragons trailed 3-2 with two outs and Shard Munroe at second base in the bottom of the ninth when Brian Rey lined a hit to left field. Munroe rounded third as Lake County left fielder Ruben Cardenas fielded the ball and fired a strike to the plate. Munroe was tagged out just before he touched home plate to end the game.
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Lake County broke the tie in the eighth inning on a one-out single to right field by J.J. Berardi that scored pinch runner Hosea Nelson from second base. Nelson beat the tag by catcher Pabel Manzanero on a close play.
Trailing 2-0, the Dragons answered in the fourth with two runs to tie the score. Reniel Ozuna singled to left field to start the rally, went to second base on a ground out, and took third on a two-out wild pitch. Mariel Bautista followed with a hard grounder that was misplayed by third baseman J.J. Berardi for an error as Ozuna scored and Bautista hustled into second.
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Manzanero followed with a bloop single to right to drive in Bautista and tie the game at 2-all.
Dragons starting pitcher Jhon De Jesus worked a season-high 5.1 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with one walk and two strikeouts.
Connor Curlis replaced De Jesus with one out and two runners on base in the sixth and worked out of the jam in his first game with the Dragons. Alexis Diaz replaced Curlis to start the seventh.
Diaz allowed the lead-off man to reach in the eighth and then suffered an apparent knee injury while racing toward a foul pop on a bunt attempt from the second hitter of the inning. Diaz could not continue and was replaced by Matt Pidich, who allowed Berardi’s one-out single to drive in the tie-breaking run.
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The run was charged to Diaz (4-2) and he absorbed the loss.
The Dragons had six hits, all singles. Manzanero was 3 for 4 with a run batted in.
• The Dragons activated De Jesus from the injured list and received left-handed pitcher Connor Curliss from extended spring training. Curliss, from Findlay, played at Ohio State. He was drafted by the Reds in the 24th round in 2018 and played at Billings last summer.
Dayton relief pitcher Adrian Rodriguez was transferred to Daytona and Moises Nova was placed on the Billings roster.
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