Bowling Green, Ky. (WBKO) --- Michael Plassmeyer tossed six efficient innings, but it wasn’t enough, as the Hot Rods fell 6-0 to the Dayton Dragons on Saturday night in front of a sell-out crowd of 5,087 at Bowling Green Ballpark. The Hot Rods are 1-2 and the two squads will finish their four-game set tomorrow afternoon at Bowling Green Ballpark at 2:05 p.m.
Plassmeyer faced the minimum through three innings as he matched zeroes with Dragons starter Jhon De Jesus. In the fourth, Plassmeyer made one of his few mistakes of the night when Mariel Bautista launched a home run over the Hot Rods bullpen and out of Bowling Green Ballpark, travelling 398 feet to give the Dragons a 1- 0 lead. Following an error and fielder’s choice, Plassmeyer finished the top of the fourth by picking Pabel Manzinaro off at first base.
Once the game turned over to the bullpens, things quickly tiled in Dayton’s favor. Steffon Moore came into the game in the seventh and promptly allowed a one-out single, which was followed by a ground ball that Osmy Gregorio did not come up, putting two runners on. After a strikeout, the miscue came back to haunt the Hot Rods as Shard Munroe and Claudio Finol followed with back-to-back RBI singles to pad the Dayton lead to 3-0.
Dayton pulled away in the eighth inning as defense, once again, aided a Dragons rally. With runners on the corners and two outs, Miguel Hernandez hit a slow roller near the mound that Moore fielded cleanly, but his throw pulled first baseman Kaleo Johnson off the bag to extend the inning and bring home a run. Juan Martinez promptly laced a two-run double into the gap in left-center to make it a 6-0 game. The Dragons went on to win by the same tally.
Plassmeyer (0-1) took his first loss of the season, tossing six innings while allowing one run on four hits with six strikeouts. Moore pitched 1.2 innings in relief allowing five unearned runs on six hits with a walk and three strikeouts. Nick Sprengel threw the final 1.1 innings, holding Dayton to one hit without allowing a run.
Notes: Hot Rods starters have combined for 22 strikeouts in the first three games of the season... The team has 39 strikeouts as a staff...Plassmeyer had the longest start of his career (previously 2.0 innings), also setting a career high in strikeouts...Grant Witherspoon collected his second consecutive multi-hit game...The crowd of 5,087 marks the largest crowd for a Hot Rods home opener since 2012... Bowling Green is below .500 for the first time since April 27, 2018 when the team was 10-11... The Hot Rods are 94- 69 all-time against the Dragons, 47-31 at Bowling Green Ballpark...The Hot Rods and Dragons wrap up their four-game series on Sunday at Bowling Green Ballpark...First pitch will be at 2:05 PM...The Hot Rods will send RH Caleb Sampen to the mound against Dragons RH James Marinan...It will be the Hot Rods’ first Signature Sunday of the season, featuring postgame autographs on the field...It will also be the Hot Rods’ first-ever Sensory Night, featuring a stress ball giveaway...Fans can catch all the action with Shawn Murnin on Willie 107.9 FM, as well as, with their smart phones via the MiLB First Pitch app and TuneIn Radio