Midland, MI - Parker Markel stayed unbeaten for the ninth straight start, sending the Bowling Green Hot Rods (32-20, 70-52) to a 6-2 victory over the Great Lakes Loons (23-29, 57-65) on Thursday night at Dow Diamond. Cameron Seitzer homered and drove in two as the Hot Rods claimed the series win in the middle contest of the three-game set. The team's third straight win on the road trip also places them at 18 games above .500 for the first time in the 2012 campaign.
Two Loons errors allowed the Hot Rods to score Thursday night's first run in the top of the third inning. After Ryan Brett was hit by a pitch, Jake Hager laid down a sacrifice bunt. However, the throw from Loons pitcher Duke von Schamann pulled first baseman O'Koyea Dickson off of the bag. With Drew Vettleson at the plate and runners at first and second, both runners stole the next base. Trying to throw out Hager at second, Loons catcher Michael Pericht's throw sailed into centerfield and Brett scored from third.
It was a lot less complicated for the Hot Rods in the top of the fourth inning when the team took a 2-0 lead. Seitzer began the inning with a line drive, solo home run to dead centerfield for his third of the season and his first since July 6.
After the Loons scored a run in the bottom of the fourth, the Bowling Green bats were back in action again in the top of the fifth. Brett led the inning off with a double into the gap in right-centerfield. After being moved to third on a sacrifice bunt by Hager, Jeff Malm's broken bat single into left field placed the Hot Rods back in front by two runs at 3-1.
Joe Winker's solo home run in the eighth brought the Loons to within a run, but the Hot Rods scored three ninth inning insurance runs to coast to the 6-2 win.
Parker Markel was efficient and effective in his sixth innings of work on Wednesday night, allowing just one run on five hits to earn his fifth straight quality start and his sixth in his last nine outings. The victory for Markel improves the hard-throwing right-hander to 5-0 with a 1.21 (45 earned runs in 37.1 innings) in his last six starts.
Andrew Bellatti kept the Hot Rods in the lead in his two innings of relief, and Shay Crawford, making his second appearance with the team, struck out the side in the bottom of the ninth to secure the win for the Hot Rods, who not only win the current series but the season series with the Loons. In 12 games with Great Lakes this season, the Hot Rods are 7-5.