Davenport, IA - The Quad Cities River Bandits completed a five-game sweep with a 1-0 shutout of the Clinton LumberKings on Wednesday night. The LumberKings were limited to three hits as they failed to avoid their second sweep of the season.
Tyler Pike and Vincent Velasquez were fantastic in the start for both clubs. Pike had little trouble with the River Bandits' lineup, giving up three hits in six scoreless innings. On the other side, Velasquez retired the first 12 batters he faced. However, neither pitcher factored into the decision as they departed in a scoreless tie through six innings.
The LumberKings had their best opportunity to score off Velasquez in the fifth inning. Taylor Ard led the inning with a walk, the first Clinton baserunner of the game. With two outs, Gaby Guerrero singled and Tim Lopes drew a walk to load the bases. Velasquez buckled down and retired Martin Peguero on a fly out to center to end the inning.
The River Bandits got on the board in the seventh as Tyler Pike exited the game. With Richard Vargas on the mound, Terrell Joyce reached on a throwing error by Ketel Marte to start the seventh. After Joyce advanced to third on groundouts, a walk set up runners on the corners. Vargas committed a balk by faking to third and throwing to first, a move outlawed over the past offseason. The balk allowed Joyce to score the only run of the game.
Clinton threatened in the ninth, getting the tying run to third base but no farther. Marte singled and Dario Pizzano walked to put the tying run in scoring position. Chia-Jen Lo induced back-to-back bounce outs from Taylor Ard and Tyler Marlette to end the game.
Gerardo Sanchez earned the win for Quad Cities, improving to 4-1. Vargas took his first loss season, now 0-1 on the year. Chia-Jen Lo recorded the save in his Midwest League debut.
The LumberKings return home to Ashford University Field for a brief two-game series with the Burlington Bees, starting on Thursday night. In the series opener, Clinton sends right-hander Charles Kaalekahi (1-1, 5.63) while Burlington counters with left-hander Nic DellaTorre (0-0, 0.00). First pitch is scheduled for 7:00 PM CT.