The Mud Hens lost to Durham 6-2 Tuesday night, but that wasn’t the news of the night from Fifth Third Field.
The news came with the Bulls batting in the top of the eighth. Hens reliever Kenny Faulk threw a pitch, and suddenly the Toledo coaching staff was waiving Avisail Garcia into the dugout from his centerfield position.
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“I have no idea on Garcia — I was asked to take him out of the game [by the Detroit front office],” Nevin said after the contest. “I haven’t heard anything else.”
After the game Garcia said he wasn’t injured, and he knew nothing else.
“They didn’t tell me anything,” Garcia said. “I was surprised [to come out].”
Another Mud Hen who had an “awkward” evening at Fifth Third Field was started Kyle Lobstein. The left-hander was a Rule 5 pick of the Tigers from the Tampa Bay system, meaning he had played with several Durham players as they came up through the Rays minor-league system.
“It was kind of weird [to face them], to be honest,” Lobstein admitted. “Especially when you look out and see guys on the field and last year I was playing with them.
“It also was fun, though, and it was exciting.”
It also was a bit of a disappointment for Lobstein, who got the loss after allowing eight hits and five runs in six innings of work. The Hens weren’t very sharp defensively, with one error and several other plays not made resulting in two unearned runs.
“I thought his line was a little skewed there,” Nevin said of Lobstein. “There were two seeing-eye hits that fell in the outfield, and a ground ball that was a tough play.
“I thought he threw the ball better than his line.”
Lobstein gave up three hits and a run in the first, then was victimized by a potential double-play grounder that wasn’t turned in the third. By the end of the inning the Bulls had scored two more runs.
In the fourth he allowed two more singles and a walk to load the bases with one out, but allowed just one run on a slow roller to second.
In the sixth, Durham nicked him for another run thanks to a walk, a double and a sacrifice fly.
“I left some balls up [in the strike zone], and those balls are going to get hit at this level,” Lobstein said. “I’ve got to make sure I throw more strikes and get ahead in the count more.
“I kept falling behind, and then I had to throw pitches that were too good.”
Meanwhile Toledo struggled offensively against the Bulls, who came into the game leading the International League with a 3.36 ERA. It took a single and three straight walks, the last coming to Nick Castellanos with the bases loaded, to score a run in the fifth.
In the ninth the Hens got back-to-back two-out doubles by Bryan Holaday and Danny Worth for another run. But Toledo finished with just six hits to lose its second in a row.
“They’re at the top of the league in pitching for a reason, and they showed that reason,” Nevin said. “We took some good at-bats against them in Durham, and I expect will swing the bats better against them [tonight].”
NOTES: Argenis Diaz was scratched from the Hens’ lineup just before the game started. “He wasn’t feeling good before the game and thought he could go, but he couldn’t,” Nevin said. … The Hens placed Jon Link on the temporary inactive list. Nevin said Link is dealing with a “personal issue” and does not know when the pitcher will return. … The crowd of 10,300 was the Mud Hens 21st sellout this season and the 348t in Fifth Third Field history.