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The Journal Gazette

  • Katie Fyfe | The Journal Gazette TinCaps' Grant Little broke a long hitless stretch with a double Saturday, but the TinCaps lost 10-3 to the Quad Cities River Bandits, their third straight defeat.

Sunday, May 05, 2019 12:20 am

TinCaps drop third straight, VanMeter getting the call

DYLAN SINN | The Journal Gazette

Not much went right for the TinCaps tonight. They gave up 15 hits, made three errors, left eight runners on base and just generally looked a step slow in a 10-3 loss to the Quad Cities River Bandits. 

The loss ensures that Fort Wayne will drop its fourth straight series and that its winless streak in series dating back to April 11 will continue. Manager Anthony Contreras was displeased with his team's competitiveness for the second time in less than a week and the TinCaps are now 6-14 in their last 20 games since a hot start. Simply put, this team is far too talented to be playing this way. Contreras is trying to push the right buttons, but some of the older players (they exist, even on a team this young) have to step up and lead the way. Lee Solomon said the team needs to "flip a switch" and it needs to happen sooner rather than later before the team gets used to losing.

To make matters worse, shortstop Xavier Edwards, the TinCaps' top position-player prospect left the game in the sixth inning today with an apparent injury. With a day game Sunday, I would bet that takes him out of the lineup at least for the series finale. Edwards was leading the league in hitting when he went down, so this is a big loss for an already sputtering offense. Maybe Grant Little, who broke an 0-for-22 stretch with a double tonight can get hot and pick up some of the slack.

Now, for the good news. The first positive development is that the TinCaps send their best to the mound Sunday. Left-hander Ryan Weathers will take the mound as Fort Wayne tries to avoid a sweep and he should be rested after leaving his start early last Sunday against the South Bend Cubs. It's unclear whether he'll be on any pitch limit after leaving that start, but knowing the competitor he is, he'll likely be champing at the bit (horse term, it is Kentucky Derby weekend after all) to get the ball.

The other good news is not related to this year's TinCaps team, but it does have to do with the organization. Former TinCap infielder Josh VanMeter, a Norwell graduate, received word Saturday that he will be called up to the big leagues for the first time Sunday. VanMeter had been raking with the Triple-A Louisville Bats, an affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, hitting 13 home runs and batting .346 in 29 games this season. He joins top prospect Nick Senzel as part of a young Reds core. The 24-year-old was a fifth-round pick of the Padres in 2013 and played 141 games for the TinCaps between 2014 and 2015. 

In other words, it was a better day for former TinCaps than current ones.