AVON, Ohio -- The Lake Erie Crushers, presented by Mercy Health, found their kryptonite in game two in the form of Tyler Thornton. The Crushers lost 2-1 to the Windy City Thunderbolts, and it was the second time this year they have lost to Thronton.
The loss for the Crushers (20-21) marks the third in their last five. While the Thunderbolts (20-24) are now only two games back of first place in the East with the win.
Alex Romero started for the Crushers tonight and turned in an amazing game. Romero threw 6.0 innings, gave up one run off four hits, walked one and struck out six in his quality start. Dalton Geekie (1-2) is credited with the loss after he gave up the winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning. Tyler Thornton (3-1) got the win after he dominated Lake Erie's offense for eight innings. Thornton gave up only one unearned run off five hits, walked one, and struck out six over his eight innings pitched. Colby Blueburg (2) pitched a one-two-three ninth to secure the win and his second save of the year.
Thornton sat down the first nine Lake Erie batters in a row before giving up his first hit in the top of the fourth. James Davison Jr. was the first Crushers batter to get a hit when he hit a single off Thornton in the fourth. Thornton then went on to do something no one in the Frontier League has been able to do yet this year, pick off Davison Jr. The lead-off single was erased in a matter of minutes and the Crushers were back to where they started.
The first run came in the top of the fifth for Lake Erie. John Cable reached on an error to start the inning. Dale Burdick then hit a single to advance Cable to second. Brody Wofford laid down a sacrifice bunt for the first out of the inning and advanced both runners in scoring position. During Bryan De La Rosa's at-bat, Thorton threw a wild pitch that scored Cable to make it an early 1-0 Lake Erie lead.
Romero worked out of two early jams in the second and third inning and did not give up a run until the sixth. In the bottom of the sixth, Omar Obregon hit a one out double and scored off a single from Shane Carrier to tie the game.
The Thunderbolts took the lead in the bottom of the eighth inning with Dalton Geekie on the mound. Geekie struck out Patrick Mathis to start the inning but then gave up a triple to Brynn Martinez. With first base open and only one out, the Crushers intentionally walked Obregon in hopes of turning an inning ending double play. Tyler Alamo then hit a weak ground ball down the third base line. Dale Burdick came in but by the time he got to the ball Martinez was about to score. Burdick made the play at first, but the RBI ground out was enough for the Thunderbolts to win game two.
The Crushers will finish the three-game series with the Windy City Thunderbolts at Ozinga Field on Sunday afternoon. Left-hander Pat Ledet (1-3, 1.90) will be on the mound for the Crushers. The Thunderbolts will go with left-hander Chris Washington (1-4, 3.18). The first pitch is scheduled for 6:05 PM.
The Lake Erie Crushers, the 2009 Frontier League Champions, and 2011 Frontier League Organization of the year, play ball at Sprenger Health Care Stadium, a 5,000 capacity stadium located in Avon, Ohio. The Frontier League is an independent baseball league with 10 teams operating throughout the Midwest. For more information on tickets, promotions and team news, visit the team website at www.LakeErieCrushers.com or call 440-934-3636.