BURLINGTON, IA - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers defeated the Burlington Bees 5-2 Sunday at Community Field in game shortened to six innings by a severe thunderstorm. Taylor Brennan drove in a pair of runs and Taylor Williams worked six innings for a complete game victory for the Rattlers. Wisconsin has opened the second half of the season 4-0 after their four-game sweep of the Bees.
Wisconsin (40-33 overall, 4-0 second half) took advantage of a bout of wildness by Burlington starting pitcher Victor Alcantara in the first inning. Johnny Davis walked, Omar Garcia singled, and Michael Ratterree walked to load the bases with no outs. Clint Coulter's fly ball to right was deep enough to score Davis. Garcia would score on an errant throw on the play and the Rattlers were up 2-0. Ratterree would take third on a wild pitch and score on a ground out by Brennan for a 3-0 lead.
The Bees (38-35, 0-4) got on the scoreboard with an unearned run in the bottom of the second inning. Stephen McGee reached on an error and took second on a ground out. Ismael Dionicio singled to center with two outs to drive in McGee and cut Wisconsin's lead to two runs.
The Rattlers answered in the top of the third. Coulter started the inning with a double. Brennan followed with a single to drive in Coulter. The throw home was wild and Brennan wound up on third base. Rafael Neda drove in Brennan with a double to left and Wisconsin was up 5-1.
The storm clouds were rolling in during the sixth inning and Mike Fish hit a solo home run for the Bees with one out in the bottom of the frame. Williams got the second out, but a double by McGee, a passed ball, and a walk to Exicardo Cayones put runners on the corners and brought the tying run to the plate as rain started to fall.
Williams got Ranyelmy Mendoza to pop out to right to end the inning. Then, the umpires called for the tarp. The Burlington grounds crew got the cover on the infield just before a torrential downpour hit Community Field. The game was called thirty minutes later as the rain showed no signs of letting up and the outfield began to flood.
Williams earned his fifth win of the season. He allowed two runs - one earned - on six hits in a six-inning complete game. Williams walked one and struck out four.
Wisconsin has opened the second half of the 2014 Midwest League season by doing something no other Timber Rattlers team has ever done. In twenty seasons of Timber Rattlers baseball, no team had ever come into Burlington and swept a four-game series from the Bees…until this series.
The Timber Rattlers are off on Monday. They return to action on Tuesday at Kane County. Preston Gainey (2-3, 3.27) is the scheduled starting pitcher for Wisconsin. Game time against the Cougars is 6:30pm. Catch the action on AM1280, WNAM or IHeartRadio starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:10pm. Wisconsin will have three games in Kane County before playing their next home game, a contest with the Bees on Friday, June 27 at 6:35pm.
Mike Fish (7th, 0 on in 6th inning off Taylor Williams, 1 out)
WP: Taylor Williams (5-1)
LP: Victor Alcantara (4-4)
TIME: 1:59 (:30 delay)