Image: TCP Photography/Courtesy Lake County Captains

Lake County Captains (3-1) 5, Dayton Dragons (2-2) 1

For the 2022 home opener at Classic Park, the 4,869 fans in attendance were treated to a great game on the mound by both teams.

In what was a pitcher’s duel in every aspect for most of the game, the Captains were victorious by a final score of 5-1. The game remained scoreless through five and a half innings when Joe Naranjo drilled a solo home run to right field in the bottom of the sixth inning. A pair of Lake County errors on a stolen base in the seventh inning tied the game at one. A four-run inning for the Captains blew the game open, on the help of three walks, two hits and an error. Christian Cairo and Joe Naranjo walked with the bases loaded and a run scored on an error. Micael Ramirez ended the scoring with a RBI ground-out.

Bibee’s stellar debut

After being drafted in the 2021 draft as the fifth round pick (156th overall), Tanner Bibee took the mound for his professional debut on a beautiful Tuesday night in Eastlake.

Participating in his first start, Bibee rode the wave of emotions and adrenaline through a crisp and efficient four innings for the Captains. The right-hander cruised through four innings on just 46 pitches, facing one batter over the minimum.

Bibee cut through the top of the Dragons order, including former major leaguer Albert Almora Jr., on nine pitches, fanning the first two batters.

He opened the second inning with a pair of strikeouts before allowing a single to the sixth man in the order. A comebacker to the mound ended the threat and got him through the frame in just 14 pitches.

For the third straight inning, he got the leadoff batter out on strikes. A single continued the inning but a double play ball capped the inning for Bibee. He threw 11 pitches in the third, with eight strikes.

His final inning was a perfect one with three strikeouts on 12 pitches.

On the night, Bibee tossed four shutout innings with two hits allowed and eight strikeouts. He pounded the zone with 36 of his 46 pitches for strikes.

“I felt pretty good for the night, lots of adrenaline for my first outing and first outing in Ohio at that,” said Bibee after the game. “Everything started to click from the beginning and continued throughout the game. I wanted to throw strikes, get weak contact and get in and out of the game quickly.”

Manager Greg DiCenzo spoke highly of Bibee after his outing, “He had everything working, all of his pitches including some off speed stuff. It was fun to watch from the dugout. He battled in counts like a professional and used some good pitches in disadvantageous counts.”

Bibee pitch counts by inning: 9 (8), 14 (10), 11 (8), 12 (10)… 46 (36)

Presence of patience

Lake County hitters coaxed seven walks against the Dayton pitching staff on Tuesday. Dayton starter Joe Boyle walked a pair of batters in each of the second and third innings but no damage was done. In the seventh inning, Lake County walked three times to keep the game going. After two singles, Mike Amditis walked to load the bases with no outs. Joe Naranjo and Christian Cairo were patient at the plate to walk in runs with the bags full.

“That’s a great example of taking your time at the plate and learning from the previous at-bats and scouting reports,” said DiCenzo. “When the opportunities present themselves at the plate, our guys have to learn and find ways to compete. The seventh inning showed that for our guys.”

Bullpen aid

After Bibee started with four shutout innings, the Captains bullpen followed with five innings of one-run baseball on just three hits. Jaime Arias-Bautista threw two shutout innings with one strikeout as he cruised through the fifth and sixth innings. Raymond Burgos allowed one unearned run on two hits in two innings with two strikeouts. Cade Smith followed with a scoreless ninth inning.

“Our guys came in and did their job tonight,” said DiCenzo. “Without specific roles in the bullpen, everyone is an available guy. They all have the same job to get outs and our guys have answered the call at that time. They made pitches and got outs.”


Aaron Bracho doubled in the fifth inning for his third hit of the season… RHP Aaron Davenport, the sixth round selection in the 2021 draft, will start for Lake County in the Wednesday matchup at 6:35 PM.

1 Comment »

  1. Do you have any information on Bibee’s FB velocity, pitch repertoire, or what his swing-and-miss pitches were?

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