Luis Devers – Picture by Todd Johnson

It’s weird how things can happen when you least expect it.

Magic Numbers of the Day

Tonight was one of those instances where I was surprise quite a bit throughout the night. I spent most of the time watching South Bend and cleaning up some files on my computer. It was fun seeing them take their magic number down to three after Beloit lost. It’s just a matter of time before they clinch the division title and a playoff spot. 

I’m still trying to figure out just exactly what Tennessee’s magic number is. They’ve opened up at six game lead over Birmingham and they have 15 games left. Rocket City looks like it’s going to run away with the division title as they did in the first half. If they do, Tennessee has the better overall record for the year. There is a magic number for the better record for the year, and then there’s another number for Tennessee finishing in second place over Birmingham which is probably the more important number to get Tennessee into the playoffs. Tonight, that second magic number dropped to ten (as of press time – Birmingham was in extras).

Relay of the Day

You would think it would be hard to top yesterday‘s web gems by Porter Hodge and Delvin Zinn. Well, not so much. This double into the corner looked to be scoring a player from first for Lansing. After getting to the ball on a somewhat circuitous route, Yohendrick Pinango made a very solid throw to Kevin Made who then through an absolute bullet from shallow left centerfield to Pablo Aliendo who applied the tag just before the player was about to touch home plate. It shows just how much of a cannon Made has!

Starting Pitcher of the Day

Early on, I thought this was going to be Ryan Jensen‘s night. Jensen only wound up throwing 61 pitches in four innings where he did not allow a run and struck out five. Even though Luis Devers allowed a run, he also went five innings and struck out eight on the night to get the Starting Pitcher of the Day award.

Reliever of the Day

While Cam Sanders had a good night throwing two innings with 3K‘s, my little heartstrings were so excited to see Ben Hecht Tennessee pitch well again for the second time in a row as some people have forgotten about how good of a reliever he was before the pandemic in 2019. While their performances were very good tonight, Brody McCullough of Myrtle Beach is going to be a very interesting arm in 2023 where he’ll probably be a starter. But for tonight, the 10th round pick out a Wingate struck out three in 1.1 IP for Myrtle Beach and he was pretty pumped about it.

Hitter of the Day

I got thinking about this award a little too early in the evening. I thought Matt Mervis had it wrapped up with a two for four night with two RBI. He also hit a home run getting him closer to 30. Yeah but then they were other guys who put up some numbers. Jordan Nwogu, Owen Caissie, and Luis Verdugo all had a couple of hits for South Bend. Ezequiel Pagán had three hits for Myrtle Beach, and Jake Slaughter went 3-for-5 for Tennessee. Kevin Alcantara, Haydn McGeary, and Josue Huma also had two hits apiece.

I will roll with Mervis just because we have not seen this type of RBI damage by a Cub since 2014. And this HR was just crushed.

I will be back in the morning with a look at some of the top storylines coming from North Side Bound in September.