TOP TEN Loons Games of 2012, Part 2

And now, the rest of the list. If you missed games 10 through 6, catch up here.

5. Joe’s Birthday Bash – 8.28.2012

The Great Lakes Loons celebrated the 23rd birthday of teammate Joe Winker by rallying in the eighth inning to defeat the Lake County Captains, 6-5. The birthday boy hit a home run in the sixth to pull the Loons to within one, but the real birthday magic came in the eighth when his RBI-double to left-center field tied the game at 5-5 and the following double scored him as the winning run. Mimicking Winker’s performance was third baseman Jeff Hunt, who connected for a home run in the seventh to make it 5-4 and hit the double that scored Winker in the eighth. While both men shared the same stat line of two hits, two runs and two RBI; Hunt is still waiting to make his birthday wish this February 13. Game Story / Video Highlights

4. The Sweet Sixteenth – 5.16.2012

Leading 5-4 late, the Loons allowed the visiting West Michigan Whitecaps to tie it up in the ninth and send this Loons game into the record books. After 16 innings (five hours and 22 minutes), the Great Lakes Loons outlasted the Whitecaps in the early morning to pull off a 6-5 win in the longest Loons game in team history. The final run came from an unlikely source, 0-for-7 entering his 16th inning at-bat and in the midst of a 0-for-23 skid, James Baldwin ripped a line drive down the right-field line for the game-winning double that scored Jesse Bosnik. Game Story / Video Highlights

3. Sanchez’s Spotless Seven – 7.2.2012

Making only his second start of the season, Raydel Sanchez set the tone for the Loons pitching staff by dealing seven hitless innings en route to a 1-0 shutout win against the West Michigan Whitecaps. The right-hander road the success of his newly-developed change-up, fanning four as he cruised to the eighth. Pitching coach Hector Berrios said that Sanchez’s health came into the decision to pull him from the game in the midst of his no-hitter, having already tossed 10 more pitches than he had planned. The Loons continued the no-hit bid through two more outs before the Whitecaps finally connected in the eighth. Earlier in the game, shortstop Pedro Guerrero knocked a double to center field that scored the Loons lone run. Game Story / Video Highlights

2. Akins Echoes 2011 – 8.7.2012

For anyone who read last season’s Top Ten list, you might remember Mr. Nick Akins topping it off with his ‘Moon Shot’ winner. Well, the Loons center fielder channeled his 2011 walk-off again this season with a blast that was equally exciting. With two outs and nobody on base, Akins wasted no time in his 10th-inning at-bat and delivered a towering home run to left field for the walk-off 6-5 victory over the Dragons. But the real question was, how could Akins top his celebration from last year? It may have looked pretty identical, but he did add the jersey removal part to keep it fresh. While Akins gets the spotlight, teammate Pedro Guerrero twice tied the game for the Loons to allow for the exciting finish. Once with a two-run homer in the seventh and then again with a two-out RBI double in the ninth. Game Story / Video Highlights

1. Rain Dancing for Rallies – 5.27.2012

That’s right. A rainy day at Dow Diamond proved to be the Loons most fun and entertaining game of the season. You see, the Loons defeated the South Bend Silver Hawks with a rally to win 6-4 on this Sunday in May, but that was just the cherry on top of a one-hour and 59-minute rain delay in the third inning. What transpired in the persistent rain was a full-on choreographed dance-off between the Loons and Silver Hawks. As a previous FTN post describes it, the delay included bowling, bobsled, curling, jousting, buck hunting, flower posing, chicken eating, weight lifting, roller riding, and more. Pitchers Ryan O’Sullivan, Jason West and Matt Shelton were the team’s creative leaders and have set the bar awfully high for future rain delays. Great stuff. Game Story / Video Highlights

1 Comment

We were at Game #3 against the Whitecaps. It was a beautiful night, and a great ballgame. This was the kids first trip to Dow Diamond, and they loved it and really want to go again next season. I’m sure we’ll get there at some point. Here’s my post on that game with some decent pics:

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