Round two of the Midwest League playoffs got underway Saturday, with the Lansing Lugnuts and the Cedar Rapids Kernels taking 1-0 leads in their respective series.
The Lugnuts beat the West Michigan Whitecaps 5-4 at Fifth Third Ballpark. Lansing’s starting pitcher, Tom Robson, got the win after giving up one run on four hits and a walk in six innings. He struck out two and hit two batters.
Mike Gerber and Francisco Contreras hit solo home runs for the Whitecaps. Lansing’s D.J. Davis reached base in all four of his plate appearances, hitting two singles and drawing two walks. He also drove in a run.
At Dozer Park, the Cedar Rapids Kernels staved off a 9th-inning rally by the Peoria Chiefs to win 3-2. Down two runs entering the bottom of the 9th, the Chiefs got a leadoff triple from Kenny Peoples-Walls and an RBI single by Darren Seferina to make it a one-run game before Kernels closer Nick Anderson struck out the next three batters to preserve the Cedar Rapids win.
Kernels starting pitcher Keaton Steele got the win after giving up only one run on two hits and no walks. He struck out nine and hit a batter.
Max Murphy hit a two-run homer for the Kernels.
I’d like to see the Whitecaps win it, but Lansing is such a good team it will be tough. I think Graham will be promoted, too, and he’s done a great job in WM.