Brett Phillips launched a walk-off grand slam to cap a doubleheader sweep of the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, as the Quad Cities River Bandits won 5-0 and then 6-4 to take two out of three in the series.
Wisconsin led 4-2 in the bottom of the seventh of game two with their starter Victor Diaz on the mound. Diaz yielded a leadoff single to Dayne Parker, got Thomas Lindauer to fly to center but then gave up a hit to James Ramsay, who finished 2-for-4, before being pulled for reliever Tyler Spurlin. Marc Wik singled to left to load the bases for Phillips, who smashed the first pitch he saw from Spurlin (3-1) over the right-center field wall to give the River Bandits (10-7 second half, 45-41 overall) the walk-off 6-4 victory.
Michael Feliz (5-2) earned the victory in relief of Quad Cities starter Jandel Gustave, who lasted only 3.1 frames. Gustave left with the bases loaded in a 3-1 game in the fourth, with two Timber Rattlers (9-8, 45-41) having already crossed the plate in the inning. But Feliz fanned Johnny Davis and got Omar Garcia to groundout to end the threat. The right-hander also struck out the side in the top of the seventh, setting up the scene for Phillips' walk-off dinger. Feliz allowed a run on two hits with a walk and six punchouts in 3.2 frames.
Chris Lee (4-5) rolled through the Wisconsin order in game one, scattering five hits with a walk and strikeout in his six frames for the win. Lee's walk of Jose Pena was his first in 14.2 innings, the best of any River Bandits pitcher this season. The Timber Rattlers had one runner reach third base all game against Lee.
Chase McDonald led off the second inning of a scoreless game one by reaching on an error by Timber Rattlers shortstop Steven Halcomb. Wisconsin starter Anthony Banda got Ronnie Mitchell to fly to center field but then Brett Booth singled to put runners on first and second with one out. After Brian Holberton struck out, Thomas Lindauer cracked a three-run home run onto the berm in left field to burst open a scoreless contest.
More shoddy defense helped Quad Cities add to their lead in the fourth. Banda, who fanned a season-high 10, struck out both Jose Fernandez and Phillips to start the frame before McDonald singled to left. With two outs, Mitchell lined a ball to shallow center. Wisconsin center fielder Johnny Davis tried to make a diving catch, but had the ball scoot by him and roll all the way to the wall, allowing McDonald to score from first and Mitchell to end up at third with his first triple of the season.
Banda (4-6) surrendered five runs, just two earned, on six hits with two walks in his five innings to take the loss.
Quad Cities will start a three-game series Tuesday with Edison Frias (5-3, 5.36 ERA) on the mound against the Kane County Cougars from Modern Woodmen Park.
UP NEXT: The River Bandits celebrate Disco Night with '70s prices on food and beer. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. for the 7 p.m. first pitch against the Kane County Cougars. Game tickets are available at www.riverbandits.com. To order any of the River Bandits 2014 ticket plans - with new lower prices - call the River Bandits box office at 563-324-3000. Season ticket and mini-plan packages start at just seven games and begin at less than $40. Call a River Bandits account representative today to choose your seats and get the details of our various mini-plan packages.
ABOUT THE BANDITS: Having just been named Ballpark Digest's winner of Best Ballpark Improvement in America under $1 million, the River Bandits ownership recently made one of the biggest improvements to Modern Woodmen Park since the ballpark was first built back in 1931! A new Ferris wheel, standing 105 feet over the playing field, opened May 24, and Space Camp opened June 20. Soon to come is another new ride, this one called a "Drop and Twist." In 2013, the team unveiled a new 220-foot long dual zip line, a rock climbing wall, and a number of new bounce houses. Last season, the team's major league affiliate, the Houston Astros, saw all six of its affiliates reach the playoffs - the first time in a decade any MLB team can claim such success. The River Bandits were one of three affiliates to reach the championship round and one of two to win their league championship.