The TinCaps let a late lead get away and saw their three-game winning streak snapped with a 5-3 loss to the West Michigan Whitecaps in the opener of a six-game series at LMCU Ballpark on Tuesday night.
The defeat drops the TinCaps behind West Michigan and into a tie for fifth in the High-A Central East Division standings.
Fort Wayne (43-48) rallied from an early 2-0 deficit to tie the game in the sixth inning when Justin Lopez drove in two with an RBI single. The TinCaps took the lead an inning later on a Chris Givin single that scored Reinaldo Ilarraza to make it 3-2. Givin and Ilarraza had two hits apiece.
That advantage was short-lived, however. In the bottom of the seventh, TinCaps reliever Edwuin Bencomo, who had pitched a scoreless sixth, gave up a game-tying double to Cooper Johnson and later in the inning pushed Johnson across with the go-ahead run on a wild pitch.
The TinCaps managed only one total baserunner in the eighth and ninth.
Prior to the game, the Padres promoted Fort Wayne starter Moises Lugo, who was among the league leaders in strikeouts and ERA, to Double-A. They sent infielder Ripken Reyes to Fort Wayne from the Arizona Complex League and Reyes went 1 for 4 on Tuesday.