Rattlers Start Second Half with Win

GRAND CHUTE, WI – Jose Acosta’s eighth-inning homer broke a 3-3 tie and Cam Robinson got the last five outs of the game to send the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers to a 4-3 victory over the Quad Cities River Bandits in the first game of the second half of the Midwest League schedule.

There was big news announced after the game by Wisconsin Timber Rattlers manager Joe Ayrault while recording the postgame podcast.  Ayrault announced that Milwaukee Brewers infielder Kolten Wong will be in the Wisconsin lineup on Saturday night.  It was confirmed after the game that Wong will be Wisconsin’s designated hitter on Saturday night when the teams meet at 6:40pm.  He is also set to play second base for the Timber Rattlers when Wisconsin and Quad Cities wrap up the series at 1:10pm on Sunday afternoon.

Tickets for Saturday and Sunday are available on the Timber Rattlers website.

In Friday’s game action, Dillan Shrum hit a lead-off home run in the top of the second inning and the River Bandits (26-41 overall, 0-1 second half) had a 1-0 lead.

Wisconsin’s bats were quiet after a lead-off single by Tyler Black in the bottom of the first.  Quad Cities starting pitcher Charlie Neuweiler retired the next eleven batters in a row.

That streak was snapped by a two-out single by Wes Clarke in the bottom of the fourth.  Joe Gray Jr was next, and he lined a single to center.  Then, Ethan Murray followed with a double off the wall in left to score both Clarke and Gray to put the Rattlers (37-29, 1-0) up 2-1.  Ashton McGee delivered a single for the fourth straight two-out hit and Murray scored for a 3-1 lead.

Quad Cities tied the game in the top of the sixth inning.  Kale Emshoff and Shrum both singled with one out.  Wisconsin starting pitcher Justin Jarvis reached 100 pitches on the single by Shrum and left the game.

Zach King took over for Jarvis and issued a walk to load the bases.  Juan Carlos Negret lined the next pitch down the line in left for the two-run double.  King held the line after that, and the game stayed tied 3-3.

The Timber Rattlers went back in front in the bottom of the seventh.  Jose Acosta hit a long, solo home run to right with two outs and Wisconsin was up 4-3.

The River Bandits threatened in the top of the eighth with back-to-back singles with one out in the eighth by Shrum and Morgan McCullough off Robbie Baker.  The call went to Wisconsin closer Cam Robinson to get out of the jam.

Robinson closed out the eighth with back-to-back strikeouts to strand the runners and maintain the lead. 

In the top of the ninth, Diego Hernandez singled with one away to bring the lead run to the plate in the form of Luca Tresh.  Robinson got Tresh to send a grounder up the middle.  Acosta ranged over from second to field the ball, step on second, and fire to first to complete a game-ending double play.

Robinson was credited with his sixteenth save of the season.  He leads all levels of Minor League Baseball in saves.

Game five of the series is Saturday night at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium.  Antoine Kelly (1-3, 3.34) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers.  Noah Cameron (2-0, 3.00) is set to start for the River Bandits.  Game time is 6:40pm.

Star Wars Night is here!  The characters you love from the movies you remember will be in attendance to meet you.  Timber Rattlers players and coaches will wear jerseys inspired by Boba Fett’s armor and those jerseys are up for bid in online auctions at this link.  Auction number one with half of the jersey ends at 6:30pm on Sunday, June 26.  The auction with the other half of the jerseys ends at 7:00pm on Sunday, June 26.  Proceeds from this jersey auction will go to Make-A-Wish Wisconsin from Timber Rattlers Give Back, the official 501(c)(3) of the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers.

Saturday is also Family Night courtesy of Stacey Hennessey Century 21 Affiliated and 101.1 WIXX.  Tundraland presents the postgame fireworks show with Kids Run the Bases available for children twelve and under courtesy of Meijer after the fireworks.

If you can’t make it out to the ballpark, the radio broadcast on AM1280, WNAM and internet audio is set to start with the pregame show at 6:20pm.  The game is also available to subscribers of MiLB.tv.  Saturday’s game will also air on CW 14 in Northeastern Wisconsin starting at 6:30pm.