Nick Schulz hit two home runs, one a grand slam, and Fernando Perez also went yard Tuesday night as the TinCaps broke the franchise record for homers in a season during a 12-3 thrashing of Bowling Green at Parkview Field.
Schulz’s slam in the sixth inning pushed the team’s total to 98, one better than the 2009 club that won the Midwest League championship. Perez’s two-run shot opened the scoring in the first and was his 17th – three shy of the individual season record with six games to play.
The TinCaps (58-75, 28-36 second half) inched closer to Bowling Green (60-72, 28-35) in the Midwest League’s Eastern Division playoff race. Because wild-card leader Dayton (30-34) fell 2-1 to Great Lakes, the TinCaps moved within two games off the pace for the final postseason berth.
The offense blasted Hot Rods southpaw Ben Griset at the get-go. Following Perez’s blast, Schulz and Rey Bruguera added RBI singles to extend the lead to 4-0.
Ronnie Richardson drilled an RBI double in the fourth, and Schulz’s solo shot in the fifth was followed soon after by Trea Turner’s RBI single.
TinCaps starter Jeffery Enloe (5-6) pitched six shutout innings and gave up two hits. Bowling Green snapped the shutout with three runs in the eighth off Jorge Guzman.
Bruguera tacked on a sacrifice fly in the bottom half.
The TinCaps, who finished with 19 hits, took two out of three to even the season series at six games apiece. The clubs meet again for the final series of the regular season beginning Saturday in Bowling Green.
Perez’s RBI total of 91 matches the franchise record set by Will Venable in 2006.