6 Run Second Gives Rattlers the Win
SOUTH BEND, IN – The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers broke a 1-1 tie with six runs in the top of the second inning and got five solid innings of relief from Zach Mort to beat the South Bend Cubs 8-3 Saturday night at Four Winds Field. The win was the second straight for Wisconsin.
The Timber Rattlers (47-32 overall, 11-3 second half) scored a run in the first inning. Tyler Black drew a lead-off walk and Darrien Miller singled to right. The duo pulled a double steal with one out. Tristan Peters cashed in Black with a sacrifice fly for the 1-0 lead.
The Cubs (44-36, 10-4) responded in the bottom of the first inning. Fabian Pertuz singled with one out. Yohendrick Pinango followed with a double off the wall in right to score Pertuz with the tying run.
Wisconsin knocked South Bend starting pitcher Manuel Espinoza out of the game in the second inning with a big rally that started because Ethan Murray reached on an error. Zavier Warren and Jose Acosta followed with singles to load the bases with no outs. Arbert Cipion was next, and he lined a double to right to score two runs. A walk to Black reloaded the bases.
Miller drove in Acosta with a sacrifice fly for a 4-1 lead. Then, Joe Gray Jr. doubled off the wall in right to score Cipion and send Black to third base. That was the hit that drove Espinoza from the game.
Peters welcomed reliever Jarod Wright with a sacrifice fly to left. Ashton McGee capped the inning with an RBI single to center for a 7-1 lead.
McGee’s hit extended his hitting streak to eight games.
South Bend scored two runs on four hits in the bottom of the third inning against Wisconsin starting pitcher Justin Bullock. Pete Crow-Armstrong tripled to start the inning. Pertuz knocked him home with a sacrifice fly. Later in the inning, Owen Caissie drove in the second run of the inning with a single. The Cubs had two on with one out after that single by Caissie, but Bullock got out of the inning with a force play at second and his sixth strikeout of the game.
Peters cracked a lead-off home run in the top of the fifth inning and the Rattlers were up 8-3. Peters drove in three runs on Saturday. He had also driven in three runs in Wisconsin’s win on Friday night at South Bend.
Zach Mort entered the game in relief of Bullock in the bottom of the fourth inning and tossed five scoreless innings to keep the Cubs in check. Mort scattered five hits, walked none, and struck out three to protect the lead and put himself in position for his fourth win of the season.
Joey Matulovich allowed two hits in the ninth but worked a scoreless frame to close out the game.
South Bend went 1-for-12 with runners in scoring position and stranded eleven runners in the game.
The win moved the Timber Rattlers into first place in the second half Western Division standings. Wisconsin leads the Cubs by a game heading Sunday’s series finale at Four Winds Field.
Justin Jarvis (7-3, 3.73) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers on Sunday. South Bend has named Daniel Palencia (1-2, 4.68) as their starting pitcher. Game time is 1:05pm CDT. The radio broadcast is on AM1280, WNAM and internet audio starting with the pregame show at 12:45pm. This game is also available to MiLB.tv subscribers.