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WKEF-TV ABC 22 News :: Sports - Local Sports - Dragons Win 7-6, Gain Ground in Wildcard Race

Dragons Win 7-6, Gain Ground in Wildcard Race

Dayton, Ohio—The Dayton Dragons jumped out to a 7-0 lead over the first three innings and withstood a Lansing comeback bid to hold on and defeat the Lugnuts 7-6 on Saturday night.  A crowd of 9,031 saw the game at Fifth Third Field.
 
The win left the Dragons two games behind West Michigan in the first half East Division wildcard race.  West Michigan lost at Fort Wayne in 10 innings, 7-5.  The Dragons win at home followed a six-game road trip in which they went 0-6.
 
After being shutout in an 11-inning loss at West Michigan on Friday and scoring just three runs in the three-game series against the Whitecaps, the Dragons came out hitting on Saturday.  They scored two runs in the first, four more in the second, and one in the third to build a 7-0 lead.
 
The runs came from a balanced attack that included hits from eight different players over the first three innings.  Sebastian Elizalde’s two-run double in the first got the scoring started, and the Dragons got RBI singles in the second from Carlton Daal, Nick Benedetto, and Sammy Diaz.  Benedetto drove in another run with a run-scoring single in the third.
 
Meanwhile, Dragons starting pitcher Nick Travieso did not allow a base runner until the fourth inning, and did not give up a run until Jason Leblebijian’s solo home run in the sixth that made it 7-1.  The Lugnuts got to Travieso for four hits and three runs in the seventh to close the gap to 7-4.  Nolan Becker replaced Travieso with one out in the inning and retired both batters he faced to work out of further trouble.
 
Lansing scored two more in the eighth to make it a 7-6 game, keyed by a high bouncer over the head of Dragons first baseman Daniel Pigott that went to the right-field corner for an RBI triple by Derrick Loveless.  But Dayton closer Scott Brattvet worked a scoreless ninth inning, allowing only a two-out single by Ian Parmley before getting Leblebijian to ground to third on a fine play by Dayton infielder Sammy Diaz.  Diaz put on a fielding clinic over the course of the game with numerous outstanding defensive plays at third.
 
The Dragons improved to 28-26 with the win while Lansing fell to 26-29.
 
The Dragons host Lansing on Sunday at 2:00 p.m.  Nick Routt (0-0, 6.35) will make his second start of the year for the Dragons against Lansing’s Alberto Tirado (1-1, 5.24).
 
All Dragons games can be heard on WONE Radio (980 AM) and via the internet at wone.com and through the Dragons Mobile App.
 
Notes:  The Dragons made several roster moves before Saturday’s game.  First baseman Daniel Pigott and outfielder Jon Matthews were activated from the disabled list.  Outfielder Jeff Gelalich was placed on the disabled list after fouling a ball hard off his foot on Friday.  Infielder Humberto Valor was released.Dragons Win 7-6, Gain Ground in Wildcard Race

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Ohio Sports

BREWERS-REDS

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Johnny Cueto pitched seven solid innings, and the Cincinnati Reds stayed in the chase for the NL's top record by beating the Milwaukee Brewers 4-2 on Tuesday night after learning they'll be without their manager for the rest of the week.

The Brewers dropped back-to-back games for the first time in more than a month, and it came at a bad time. They started the day 3 1/2 games behind St. Louis for the final NL wild card spot.

They got no break from the Reds, who clinched the NL Central title on Saturday night.

Manager Dusty Baker met players before the game and revealed he suffered a mini-stroke in addition to being treated for an irregular heartbeat last week. The 63-year-old manager hopes to return to the dugout next week.

REDS-BAKER

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Dusty Baker won't manage the Cincinnati Reds until the final series in St. Louis, giving him time to recover from an irregular heartbeat that left him hospitalized last week.

Baker met with owner Bob Castellini and his team on Tuesday before a game against the Brewers. Bench coach Chris Speier said he'll manage the final three home games against Milwaukee and three in Pittsburgh over the weekend, with Baker taking over for the last three games next week.

The 63-year-old manager was hospitalized in Chicago last Wednesday for an irregular heartbeat, a problem he's had for a while. He was in the hospital for four days, missing the Reds' 6-0 win over the Dodgers on Saturday night that clinched the NL Central title.

INDIANS-WHITE SOX

CHICAGO (AP) -- The Chicago White Sox have lost sole possession of first place in the AL Central race, with the Indians playing spoiler. Gordon Beckham hit into a game-ending forceout with the potential tying run on second base yesterday as the Indians downed the White Sox 4-3.

Down 4-0 in the fourth inning, the White Sox closed within a run when Paul Konerko homered off Chris Perez leading off the ninth. Perez walked a pair of batters with two outs, and Beckham grounded to shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, who threw to second baseman Jason Kipnis for the force.

Chicago (82-72) had held sole possession of the division lead since September 3. Detroit pulled into a tie for the division lead with its win over Kansas City last night.

T25-OHIO ST-MATCHING UP

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Through four games and four victories, Ohio State's defense has faced a continual drumbeat of short passes, quick routes, screens and sweeps.

Every opponent, it seems, has relied on a sleight of hand.

Now the Buckeyes are looking forward to getting into familiar territory when they open Big Ten play.

When No. 14 Ohio State travels to 20th-ranked Michigan State on Saturday, the Buckeyes anticipate they'll run into a more conventional Midwestern attack. Granted, that means having to counteract the 244-pound blasts of the Spartans' massive Le'Veon Bell.

But after a month of chasing people, the Buckeyes think they might benefit from a change of pace from the subterfuge and rush-avoiding quick-hitters in a trade for raw man-on-man power struggles at the line of scrimmage.

T25-UPTIGHT SPARTANS

EAST LANSING, Mich. (AP) -- Michigan State's lackluster win last weekend got to coach Mark Dantonio.

After the Spartans beat Eastern Michigan 23-7 Saturday, Dantonio hurried through a terse news conference full of abrupt answers. The Michigan State coach said "next question" seven times in under a minute and was clearly annoyed with the way his team played.

On Tuesday, Dantonio spoke with reporters for around a half-hour, but Michigan State isn't making any players or assistants available this week. The Spartans' coach is trying to send a clear message to his players that it's time to get serious.

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