FORT WAYNE – Eric Yardley went from stud to dud in a single pitch on Wednesday night.
The TinCaps’ setup man nursed a 1-0 lead at Parkview Field, an out away from carrying it to the ninth inning.
Then, on a 2-2 delivery, Yardley opted to go with a slider to Beloit’s Tyler Marincov that was supposed to be above the strike zone.
Instead, it was a bit of a hanger, and Marincov hit a laser onto the left field concourse, spurring the Snappers to a 6-1 win.
Bad location and bad selection, Yardley said. I probably should have gone fastball.
Jake Bauers’ fourth-inning RBI groundout put Fort Wayne on the board first.
That might have been enough, except Marincov’s two-run homer, his 13th, flipped the game on its head.
I was looking for something hard away, the Beloit right fielder said. He hung the slider. I was able to react and stay short.
The night should have been about Yimmi Brasoban, who ended up pitching six shutout frames and gave up three hits while striking out six.
The Snappers were almost completely befuddled by the 20-year-old right-hander, who produced his best start of an up-and-down season.
Everything went well, TinCaps manager Michael Collins said. A great, positive outing.
After 100 games, the TinCaps are 41-59. They are nine games below .500 in the second half at 11-20.
Beloit (40-61, 10-21) is the only team in the Midwest League that’s been worse this season.
Brasoban appeared to separate the two teams with excellent precision. He walked one and fired 47 of his 79 pitches for strikes.
He hit his spots, said TinCaps left fielder Nick Schulz, who went 0 for 4. It’s tough not to hit when a guy’s doing his job.
The offense hasn’t really been there for Fort Wayne with seven runs in the past four games, a 1-3 stretch.
Still, the Snappers, who scored four runs in the ninth, had to claw their way back. Yardley worked around a single and a walk in the seventh and retired the first batter he faced in the eighth.
Then Fernando Perez botched a ground ball at second base and Beloit’s Philip Pohl hit a chopper to the third base side of the mound that was scored an infield hit.
Yardley’s throw on the play veered down the line, but right fielder Franmil Reyes preserved the 1-0 lead. He scrambled after the ball and gunned down the lead runner at home.
That was awesome, Collins said of Reyes’ assist. He was playing the game the right way, backing up the base.
The game got away with the next batter.
That’s baseball, Yardley said. All it takes is one pitch to come back and get you. You learn from your mistakes. That’s why we’re down here.