MIDLAND, Mich. – Great Lakes Loons starting pitcher Leo Crawford pitched into the 6th inning for just the second time for any Loons pitcher in the 2017 season on Thursday afternoon. The lefty and reliever Miguel Urena stymied the Burlington Bees lineup all afternoon as Great Lakes came away with the 2-1 victory to take the series.
The only other instance so far this season where a pitcher turned in a quality start was when Devin Smeltzer threw six scoreless innings and struck out eight batters against the Lake County Captains on April 25.
Crawford (W, 1-1) showed flashes of what he did for the Loons (11-16) down the stretch last year en route to the team clinching their Midwest League Championship, carving up Burlington (9-14) batters all day allowing just two baserunners in his start. The lefty didn’t have incredibly high strikeout numbers a season ago, but did have five punch outs against the Bees. Other than a four-inning scoreless outing on April 12, it was Crawford’s best start of the season thus far.
Equally impressive out of the bullpen was Urena (SV, 2) who kept the Bees at bay over the final three innings allowing a single run on just one hit. Since joining the Loons from Double-A Tulsa, the right-hander has allowed just one run in seven innings pitched.
The offense came early for Great Lakes as they built their initial 2-0 lead in the first couple frames. It was Wednesday’s hero Carlos Rincon who walked with two outs in the 1st. Then Cody Thomas moved him to third base before Oneil Cruz placed a ball into right field to get the Loons on the board. Brendon Davis used the long ball in the 3rd to double the lead, rocketing a ball over the fence in left field off Burlington starter Travis Herrin (L, 0-1).
Thomas and Cruz did most of the heavy lifting as they combined for five of the Loons seven hits on the day. The only player to record a hit for Burlington was first baseman Brennan Morgan who went 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI.
It’s now back-to-back wins for the Loons as they will welcome the Peoria Chiefs for a three-game series beginning on Friday and running through Sunday. The right-hander Dustin May (0-1, 3.26 ERA) is set to start for Great Lakes while the Chiefs have Steven Farinaro (1-1, 5.94) scheduled to get the ball.
The 2016 Midwest League Champions and hosts of the 2017 MWL All-Star Game presented by GoGreat.com have been a Single-A partner of the Los Angeles Dodgers since the team’s inception in 2007. For tickets and more information about the Great Lakes Loons, call 989-837-BALL or visit Loons.com.
Copyright Great Lakes Loons 2017. All rights reserved.