Fort Wayne, IN – Andrew Toles extended his on-base streak to a franchise-record 30 consecutive games as the Bowling Green Hot Rods (69-52, 31-22) claimed a 6-4 win over the Fort Wayne TinCaps (62-59, 19-33) at Parkview Field on Thursday. Toles surpassed Jeff Malm’s mark of 29 straight contests on a game-opening single. Jeff Ames earned the win, pitching a career-high seven innings in the triumph.
Toles and Ames set the tone in a productive first inning. A leadoff single from Toles was followed by an errant pickoff throw from TinCaps pitcher Bryan Rodriguez. From second base, Toles stole third base and came in to score after Rodney Daal’s throw from home plate sailed into left field. Ames protected the 1-0 lead with a scoreless first inning featuring seven strikes and no balls.
In the third inning, Fort Wayne answered with a pair of home runs. Mallex Smith reached on a one-out walk but was thrown out by Luke Maile on a stolen base attempt at second base. After watching Smith’s out from the batter’s box, Reynaldo Bruguera tied the game via a solo home run to right field. Alberth Martinez singled before Gabriel Quintana launched a go-ahead home run over the left field wall that put Fort Wayne ahead 3-1.
The Hot Rods, aided by more TinCap errors, took the lead again in the fifth inning. Justin O’Conner scored from second base after tagging up on a fly out coupled with a throwing error from Smith. Marty Gantt advanced to second base on the play and tied the game at 3-3 after Toles hit a ground ball that got by first baseman Luis Tejada. Toles utilized a balk and another stolen base with an error from Daal to score and bring Bowling Green in front 4-3 against Fort Wayne.
The lead changed in size but stayed with Bowling Green through the end of the game. A TinCap error extended the top of the sixth and allowed Gantt to drive in Maile on a single. Fort Wayne responded with Quintana’s second home run, a solo shot to cut the Hot Rods lead to 5-4 in the bottom of the sixth. In the seventh inning, Joey Rickard got on base with a two-out walk and scored after a stolen base and a Tommy Coyle triple off the right field wall to add the final run of the game. Relief pitchers Andrew Hanse and Marcus Jensen each pitched a scoreless inning behind Ames to lock up the victory.