TinCaps catcher Ryan Miller saw Spencer Edwards take off for second base and was poised to throw down after receiving a pitch.
Neither shortstop Josh VanMeter nor second baseman Fernando Perez was in position to cover the bag in time, and Miller held onto the ball.
Edwards’ 10th-inning stolen base proved costly, as Bowling Green’s Johnny Field followed with a game-winning single in Friday’s 4-3 win in the opener of a three-game series at Parkview Field.
Just a little miscommunication, that’s all, VanMeter said. We’ll learn from it and make sure it doesn’t happen again. We should have known better.
The TinCaps (29-38) had rallied from a 3-1 deficit in the ninth on home runs by Ryan Miller and Henry Charles.
Then, even with All-Star closer Nick Mutz (1-4) on the mound, the game slipped from their grasp.
TinCaps manager Michael Collins said his middle infielders thought their only job was to stay in alignment against Field.
Subsequently, no one was covering the bag, Collins said. It’s a communication issue that’s been addressed. It’s probably just not fully understanding what’s happening in that situation.
I can understand wanting to protect against the hitter. At the end of the day, that’s the winning run on base. He’s probably the most important guy, more so than the hitter.
Bowling Green (31-36) trailed 1-0 after six innings.
Kyle Lloyd was cruising along before the Hot Rods opened the seventh with back-to-back singles.
Although Tayron Guerrero was ready in the bullpen, Collins stuck with Lloyd, figuring No. 7 batter Pat Blair would bunt the runners over.
Instead, Blair swung away, crushing an 87 mph, 3-2 delivery over the wall in left. It was Lloyd’s 97th and final pitch. He struck out seven.
It’s a real shame in the end that he goes six innings for three runs when he was six innings for nothing, Collins said. It looks like his greatest outing all year if he gets an out or two in the seventh and we don’t give up any runs.
Guerrero got three outs and Genison Reyes pitched two scoreless innings to set up a thrilling comeback.
Miller homered leading off the ninth, and Charles pulled a high breaking ball onto the lawn in right two batters later.
It was pretty exciting, said first baseman Jake Bauers, whose 18-game hitting streak came to an end. Two guys, two good swings. It put air in our sails.
Fernando Perez was 2 for 5 with an RBI single in the first inning, a run that held up for much of the night.
But that was all the TinCaps got off lefty Chris Kirsch, and Colton Reavis (2-1) got five outs for the win after William Gabay’s blown save.
Note: Right-hander Walker Lockett was activated from the disabled list and transferred to short-season Eugene.