West Michigan Whitecaps (6-3) – T1st in Midwest League East
The Whitecaps made their home debut last week, and the opener was an all-timer. In unseasonably warm weather, West Michigan outlasted their bitter rivals, the Lansing Lugnuts, in an 11-inning affair. Whitecaps starter Keider Montero made it just two batters into the 2nd inning, but West Michigan held a 5-4 lead for most of the game, thanks to a big performance from Parker Meadows (2-for-5, HR, 2B, BB, 2RBI) and a timely hit from Trei Cruz. Lansing tied it in the 9th, then the teams traded runs in the 10th inning. The Lugnuts seem to secure the victory with four runs in the 11th, but the Caps stormed back and won on a wind-aided Wenceel Perez walk-off:
Wednesday’s game was postponed, which meant Thursday’s doubleheader saw the Whitecaps debuts of Jordan Marks and Wilmer Flores. Marks (4IP, 6H, 5ER, BB, 5K) looked great in the 1st, 2nd, and 4th innings, but things went completely sideways in the 3rd, with four singles, a triple, a home run, and a balk, and Lansing went on to win 8-5. Flores (3IP, 7K) was absolutely electric in his outing, blowing away Lugnuts batters for three perfect innings, and Parker Meadows hit his 4th home run of the early season, leading to a 6-0 Whitecaps win.
And the week was just getting started. Carlos Guzman (5IP, 4H, ER, 3BB, 4K) authored a solid start, and catcher Mike Rothenberg hit his first home run of the season in a 6-3 win on Friday night, and then on Saturday Jack O’Loughlin (4IP, 2H, 0ER, 4K) and Dylan Smith (3IP, H, 0ER, BB, 5K) combined forces to stifle the Lugnuts bats in a 6-0 victory. The week ended with West Michigan losing 5-3, and Ty Madden (4IP, 3H, 2ER, 2BB, 3K) taking his first pro loss, though he continued to flash impressive stuff.
Up next for the Whitecaps is a six-game road trip to Ohio to face the Dayton Dragons.