CEDAR RAPIDS, IA – The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers bullpen covered the final six innings of Friday’s suspended game against the Cedar Rapids Kernels when the game resumed on Saturday night at Perfect Game Field. The relievers allowed two runs and struck out six as they protected a comfortable lead from Friday and turned the game into a 6-2 Wisconsin victory.
The Timber Rattlers (59-52 overall, 23-23 second half) built a 5-0 lead through 3-1/2 innings on Friday night before rain halted play.
Wes Clarke and Joe Gray Jr each hit two-run home runs. Antonio Piñero added a sacrifice fly for the fifth run. Brady Schanuel was the starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. He tossed three scoreless innings with three strikeouts.
Zach Mort took over for Schanuel in the bottom of the fourth inning on the restart. The Kernels had two runners on with one out before Mort got Wander Javier to ground into an inning-ending double play.
The Kernels (66-46, 23-23) got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fifth inning on a two-out, two-run hit by Jake Rucker.
Karlos Morales took over for Mort to start the sixth inning he worked around a two-out walk in the bottom of the sixth. Morales retired the first two batters he saw in the bottom of the seventh but walked the next two batters to bring the tying run to the plate. Seth Gray sent a grounder to the right side of the infield. The ball got by Clarke, the first baseman who made a lunging attempt to grab the ball. Ethan Murray, the second baseman, fielded the ball in short right and fired a strike to a running Morales covering first base for the final out of the inning.
Morales, working for the second time in relief for the Rattlers since his call up from Carolina, would be credited with the win, his first in the Midwest League.
Robbie Baker worked a scoreless eighth inning before Wisconsin added an insurance run in the top of the ninth on an RBI single by Gray. Baker went back out and tossed a scoreless ninth for his fourth save of the season.
The win snapped Wisconsin’s three-game losing streak and evened the season series between the Rattlers and Cedar Rapids. Both teams have eleven wins against each other this season.
Game two is set to start at 8:00pm.
R H E
WIS 202 100 001 – 6 9 1
CR 000 020 000 – 2 8 2
Wes Clarke (9th, 1 on in 1st inning off Luis Rijo, 0 out)
Joe Gray Jr (14th, 1 on in 3rd inning off Luis Rijo, 2 out)