BELOIT, Wis. - Beloit topped the Kernels 6-4 on Sunday afternoon, snapping a five-game winning streak for Cedar Rapids. Four of Beloit's runs were unearned run because of two Kernels errors. However, the Kernels won the series, their eighth in a row. The Kernels open up a home series with Wisconsin on Monday night at 6:35 p.m.
Minnesota Twins players - 1B Joe Mauer and RHP Ricky Nolasco - are also heading to Cedar Rapids and both expected to play for the Kernels on Tuesday night. Mauer is also slated to take batting practice with the Kernels on Monday afternoon. Gates open at 3:00 p.m. on both Monday and Tuesday for fans to watch batting practice.
Beloit scored the first run in all three games of the series, including on Sunday afternoon. The Snappers took a 1-0 lead in the second inning on a pair of doubles. Luis Baez doubled with one out to right-center and scored on Michael Soto's two-out, RBI double to deep left-center.
Logan Wade quickly tied the game 1-1 in the top of the third inning with his fifth home run of the season. His one-out homer snuck just over the wall in left-center and past the glove of Snappers center fielder Justin Higley, who scaled the wall.
The Snappers put up three unearned runs with two outs in the fourth inning, moving ahead 4-1. With two outs and Tyler Marincov at first base after a walk, Kernels right fielder Alex Swim misplayed a ball hit by Chih-Fang Pan. The fielding error allowed Marincov to score as Pan wheeled to third base. With the Snappers up by a run, Soto drilled his second RBI double - this one to right-center. It scored Pan and made the score 3-1. Soto soon scored as Justin Higley batted next and extended the lead to 4-1 with a RBI single to right.
Stephen Gonsalves (1-1) took the loss on the hill for the Kernels. The lefty pitched well in five innings of work, allowing four runs (one earned) on five hits. He struck out five and walked two.
Beloit increased their lead to 5-1 in the sixth inning with another unearned run against reliever Hudson Boyd. Phil Pohl led off the inning with a single. He advanced to third base when Soto reached on a two-out throwing error by Kernels shortstop Engelb Vielma. Pohl then scored on Boyd's wild pitch, putting the Snappers up by four runs.
Matt Stalcup (3-3) recorded the win for the Snappers, going five innings. The southpaw allowed one run on four hits while striking out five and walking three. Reliever Hunter Adkins pitched two scoreless innings before running into trouble in the eighth inning.
The Kernels tallied three runs in the eighth inning, trimming Beloit's lead to 5-4. Chad Christensen led off with a base on ball, beginning the rally. Alex Swim doubled to right-center to put two in scoring position with one out. Max Murphy followed with a RBI single to left, cutting Beloit's lead to 5-2. Then, Michael Quesada drove in both Swim and Murphy with a two-run double to left center as the Kernels got within one run. Sam Bragg came out of the bullpen for Beloit with two on and one out and proceeded to strike out a pair to end the inning.
Adkins went 2 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on four hits. He struck out three and walked two. Bragg ended up striking out the first four he faced and retired all five he faced for his fifth save.
Beloit picked up an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth inning against Kernels reliever Brandon Bixler. Pan drew a walk and later scored on a two-out RBI single by Branden Cogswell, pushing the Snappers lead to 6-4.
Bixler went two innings in relief, allowing one run on three hits. He struck out four and walked two.
The Kernels take on the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, the Midwest League affiliate of the Milwaukee Brewers, on Monday night at 6:35 p.m. Monday is Dollar Monday, which features $1.00 regular hot dogs, popcorn, ice cream sandwiches, chips, and Cracker Jacks.
Tickets are available at www.kernels.com. You can also visit the Kernels Ticket Office at Veterans Memorial Stadium or call 319-896-7560. Morgan Hawk brings you the action of all Kernels games live on KMRY Radio (93.1 FM/1450 AM) and online at www.kernels.com.