The Bowling Green Hot Rods cruised to a 7-1 win over the South Bend Silver Hawks on Sunday, putting those teams back into a tie atop the Midwest League Eastern Division standings with identical 33-23 records in the second half.
The Hot Rods took a fast lead in the 1st inning, scoring twice off Silver Hawks SP Aaron Blair, who was making his Midwest League debut. Hot Rods CF Andrew Toles stole his league-leading 55th and 56th bases of the season in that inning.
Toles had three hits in the game, including a double. The Tampa Bay Rays prospect is batting .330 in 110 games this season.
The Silver Hawks scored once, on a bases-loaded walk in the bottom of the 4th inning. The Hot Rods later extended their lead with four runs in the top of the 8th inning and one more in the top of the 9th.
Three of Bowling Green’s 8th-inning runs came off the bat of LF Marty Gantt, who hit the ball off the top of the leftfield wall. It was initially ruled a home run, but was changed to a triple. I’m fairly certain that’s the first time I’ve seen a grand slam taken away from a batter.
Hot Rods SS Brandon Martin crushed a pitch to the outfield concourse for a solo home run in the 9th. It was his fifth home run of the season.
Third baseman Brandon Drury walked four times for the Silver Hawks.
LHP Blake Snell got the win for the Hot Rods. He struck out eight batters in five innings.
Jake the Diamond Dog!
Jake the Diamond Dog performed during Sunday’s game at The Cove. Jake is a golden retriever who, among other things, retrieves bats and brings water to the umpires.
Fans love watching Jake perform his duties, but likely find it funnier when he does something he isn’t supposed to do. On Sunday, Jake gave fans one of those moments. He took a basket of bottled water to the umpire at first base, set it down, and promptly peed on it.
As you might imagine, the umpire laughed and declined to take the water. Sadly, I don’t have any pictures of this.
*All photos by Craig Wieczorkiewicz/The Midwest League Traveler