CLINTON, IA - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers attempted to make it back-to-back ninth inning comebacks against the Clinton LumberKings. But unlike Thursday night, the LumberKings held off the Rattlers in their last at bat to defeat Wisconsin 3-1 at Ashford University Field on Friday night.
The top of the Wisconsin batting order put them in front in the fourth inning. Michael Reed doubled to start the rally. Orlando Arcia bunted to move Reed to third. Tyrone Taylor continued his hot hitting with a single to left to drive in Reed. Taylor pushed his batting order to twelve straight games with that hit.
Clinton (39-38 overall, 6-2 second half) rallied to tie the game in the bottom of the fourth. There were two outs and none on base. Wisconsin starter Jorge Lopez hit Janelfry Zorilla with two outs and none on base. Taylor Ard followed with a single to put runners on first and second. Tyler Marlette was next and he singled to left to drive in Zorilla to tie the game.
Those were the only runs the starting pitchers would give up on the evening. Lopez tossed six innings, struck out six, and allowed four hits. Clinton starter Tyler Pike struck out six, walked one, and allowed two hits over seven innings.
The LumberKings took the lead in the bottom of the seventh against reliever Taylor Mangum. Gabby Guerrero started the inning with a single. Tim Lopes singled on a hit-and-run to send Guerrero around to third. Martin Peguero drove in Guerrero with a sacrifice fly to left field.
Clinton added to their lead in the bottom of the eighth. Dario Pizzano doubled to start the inning and moved to third on a ground out. The Rattlers brought the infield in, but a slow chopper up the middle off the bat of Ard left only a play to first. The ground out by Ard drove in Pizzano for a 3-1 lead.
On Thursday, the Timber Rattlers trailed 2-1 heading to the top of the ninth and scored three runs to take a 4-2 lead on the way to an eventual 5-4 win in eleven innings.
Wisconsin (30-43, 1-7) tried to repeat the feat in the ninth on Friday. Taylor singled to start the frame, but was erased on a fielder's choice when Victor Roache sent a grounder to third and the LumberKings could only get the force out at second. Then, Mike Garza's sinking line drive got in for a hit and bounced away off the leg of Zorilla. That put the tying runs at second and third with one out. But, Clinton escaped as Mark Bordanaro got a strikeout and a ground out to preserve the win for the LumberKings.
The Timber Rattlers return home to begin a five game series with the Kane County Cougars. Game one is Saturday night with Preston Gainey (3-5, 6.85) scheduled to get the starting assignment for the Timber Rattlers. Felix Pena (2-2, 3.04) is set to start for the Midwest League affiliate of the Chicago Cubs. Game time at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium is 6:35pm.
Get your gate Saturday night as Cher-Make presents Ultimate Tailgate Night with plenty of tips and fun surrounding one of the area's most popular pastimes. Plus, the first 1,000 fans to attend this game will receive a cooler bag from Cher-Make.
It's also a Fly Away Saturday, which means one lucky fan will win airfare for two from Funjet Vacations and Fox World Travel at this game. Stick around after the game for a FOX 11 fireworks display!
If you can't make it out to the game, there are several ways to catch the action. My NEW32's Sports Showdown will televise the game beginning with their pregame show at 6:00pm. The radio broadcast is available on AM1280, WNAM and timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:15pm. The game will also be available to subscribers of MiLB.TV.
WP: Tyler Pike (5-3)
LP: Taylor Mangum (1-4)
SAVE: Mark Bordonaro (2)