Tired TinCaps Take Opener Against South Bend

By Tommy Schoegler

May 10, 2012 Updated May 10, 2012 at 12:31 AM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Adys Portillo tossed seven scoreless innings on Wednesday afternoon, allowing one hit and striking out six, leading the Fort Wayne TinCaps to a 5-2 victory over the South Bend Silver Hawks at Parkview Field. Travis Whitmore went two-for-four with two runs batted in, helping the TinCaps take the series opener.

Portillo (2-1) did not surrender a base hit until the seventh inning, when Matt Helm flied a double over the head of TinCaps center fielder Kyung-Min Na. The 20-year-old Portillo walked two and struck out six, going seven innings for the second consecutive outing. Over his last two starts, Portillo has worked 14 innings, allowed three hits, no runs, walked three and struck out 12. His 38 strikeouts on the season are a team high, and tie him for third most in the Midwest League. His season ERA fell from 1.72 to 1.41 on Wednesday.

The Fort Wayne (15-18) offense scored first on a double play groundout by Mike Gallic in the second inning, making it 1-0. Four more runs scored in the fifth inning as the TinCaps sent nine men to the plate, and knocked South Bend starter Jeff Shields (0-4) out of the game. Na drew a bases loaded walk, Casey McElroy drove home Clark Murphy, and Travis Whitmore plated two runs with single to left, making it 5-0 TinCaps.

South Bend (18-15) pushed two runs across in the eighth inning against Luis De La Cruz, who worked one inning in relief of Portillo. Daniel Cropper worked a scoreless ninth or his second save of the season.

Fort Wayne has now won five out of its last six ballgames, and will look for a series victory against South Bend.

Game two of the three-game set takes place on Thursday night at Parkview Field. The scheduled starters are Joe Ross for Fort Wayne and John Pedrotty for South Bend. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM.

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