GRAND CHUTE, WI - The Burlington Bees and Wisconsin Timber Rattlers threw a lot of opportunities at each other on Sunday afternoon at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. The Bees would be the team that cashed in the most chances as they beat the Rattlers 8-3. The loss denied Wisconsin a chance to get above the .500 mark for the first time since they were 2-1 on April 6.
The Bees (12-19) did not score early on a two-out rally. Wisconsin's starting pitcher Jorge Lopez struck out the first two Burlington batters he faced. He walked the next two and allowed an infield single to load the bases. Lopez would get a strike out to end the inning and keep the Bees off the scoreboard.
It did not take long for the Rattlers (16-17) to take the lead. Tyrone Taylor doubled to left to start the bottom of the first. Michael Reed followed with another double to plate Taylor for a 1-0 lead. Adam Giacalone made it 2-0 with a single to drive in Reed later in the inning.
But, that was the last run Burlington starter Jake Boyd would allow. Boyd pitched a total of five innings, allowed one more hit, and let his offense get back into the game.
The Bees scored in the top of the second inning. Jonathan Walsh drew a leadoff walk and Sandy Martinez singled. Pedro Toribio would bloop in a single to center, his first of four singles in the game, to drive in Walsh.
Burlington took the lead in the top of the fourth inning. Martinez reached on an infield single and took second on a throwing error. Toribio dropped a bunt single to put runners on the corners. Wendell Soto was at the plate and Toribio took off for second. Catcher Clint Coulter bluffed a throw to second and fired to third. The throw glanced off Martinez and bounced into left field. By the time the play was over, Martinez had scored the tying run and Toribio was on third base.
Wendell Soto put Burlington in front with a triple to score Toribio. Then, Lopez had a 3-2 pitch on Kyle Johnson and threw a wild pitch on ball for to let Soto score.
Taylor Mangum took over for Lopez after that wild pitch and would give up a one out RBI double by Wade Hinkle to make the score 5-2.
The Bees added three more runs in the top of the sixth. A two-out, two-run triple by Michael Bolaski put Burlington up by five. A Wisconsin error, their third of the game, allowed Bolaski to score for an 8-2 lead.
Wisconsin patched together a rally in the bottom of the eighth against Burlington reliever Reid Scoggins. They had runners on first and second with two outs and Mike Garza's single to right scored Alfredo Rodriguez. A walk to Orlando Arcia, the sixth of the game issued by Scoggins, loaded the bases. But, Scoggins got the final out.
The Rattlers would draw a walk off Joseph Krehbiel, their eleventh of the game against Burlington pitching, in the ninth inning. But, Wisconsin did not threaten to score and went down quietly in the ninth.
The pitchers for both teams combined to walk twenty in the game. Wisconsin's defense committed four errors.
The final game of the series is Monday night at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. Preston Gainey (1-3, 8.82) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. Burlington has Aaron Newcomb (1-1, 4.02) as their scheduled starter. Game time is 6:35pm.
Monday is a Qdoba Q*Monday. Purchase a lunch entrée at the Qdoba off Calumet on the east side or at the Qdoba by the Fox River Mall on the west side and you will receive a free ticket to any Monday home game during the 2013 regular season.
If you can't make it out to the game, My NEW32's Sports Showdown will televise the pregame show starting with the pregame show at 6:00pm. The radio call can be heard on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame at 6:15pm.
Monday's game is also available to subscribers of MiLB.TV.
WP: Jake Boyd (2-3)
LP: Jorge Lopez (0-3)