August 19, 2015 Lake County Captains

On this date back in 2015, the Captains had a pretty big game against the Lansing Lugnuts with a few players who should now be known by all Indians fans. The best, however, may be known a little better by Orioles fans.

This game started slowly considering the end result as Julian Merryweather and Sean Reid-Foley dominated through the first four innings as each pitcher allowed just two hits. In the bottom of the fifth, the Lugnuts grabbed the first lead as Davis Harris took Merryweather deep, but that would be all he would give up all game. In the sixth, the Captains would come back quickly and strongly.

Greg Allen walked to being the inning, then went to second on an error that allowed Taylor Murphy to reach as well. This directly preceded back to back jacks by Anthony Santander and Bobby Bradley to flip the score from 0-1 to 4-1. While Reid-Foley’s night was done, the Captains weren’t done scoring. Yonathan Mendoza singled, followed by another by Francisco Mejia. While Mejia was retired on a fielder’s choice, two runs would still score thanks to a David Armendariz single and the second Lane Thomas error of the inning involving Greg Allen.

David Armendariz1
Armendariz steps up to the plate during a rehab assignment with the Indians in extended spring training 2016. – Joseph Coblitz, IBI

Santander opened the seventh with a solo home run to push the lead to six, the Lake County added one more run in the eighth when Yu Chang tripled and scored on a Stephen Patterson single. With a massive lead supporting a great start by Merryweather, they added two more in the ninth, again thanks to a Santander start. He singled with one out, moved up with a Mendoza walk and scored on a Mejia single. Chang then walked as well and Mendoza scored on a Patterson hit.

Overall, Santander and Mejia each hit safely three times and everyone in the lineup reached at least once with only Allen going hitless. Every player except Armendariz and Mejia scored a run and that pair helped out with an RBI each. Merryweather ended up going eight innings and striking out nine with four hits and just one run scored.

Julian Merryweather1
Merryweather makes a start for the Indians during a 2017 minor league spring training game in Goodyear, AZ. – Joseph Coblitz, IBI

Looking specifically at Santander, this was a break out game in a break out season. After beginning his career in 2012 after being signed as a free agent out of Venezuela, he struggled in his first three seasons and was repeating Lake County for the third time in 2015 following a lengthy DL stay. He began 2015 hot, hitting three home runs and five doubles in his first games with Mahoning Valley on rehab assignment, but cooled down quickly and hit just one more home run until August. Heading into this game, however, he hit four home runs and three doubles, slugging .658 over nine games. This two homer effort bumped that to .791 over ten games.

Santander ended up having an even better season in Lynchburg in 2016 and was taken in the rule five draft at the end of the year. This bumped him directly to the big leagues with Baltimore and he has been a regular in the Orioles line-up ever since.

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