Oklahoma City, OK - DH Jorge Soler homered, collected three RBI, and scored three runs to lead the Iowa Cubs (64-57) to an 8-5 victory over the Oklahoma City RedHawks (61-60) at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark on Friday night. RH Dallas Beeler posted a quality start and earned the win in his first pro start in his home state. With the win, the Cubs evened this series at a game apiece.
The Cubs grabbed the early lead on a two-run single by C Rafael Lopez with the bases loaded and two outs in the top of the second inning. The RedHawks answered with two runs in the bottom of the second. The Cubs came right back in the top of the third inning. With one out, 3B Kris Bryant was hit by a pitch before Soler teed off on an 0-2 delivery from RedHawks starter Nick Tropeano and drove it over the RedHawks' bullpen in left-center field for his fifth home run in 16 games with Iowa.
The RedHawks got one run back in the bottom of the third inning on an RBI single by Dexter Fowler, but Beeler (8-5) didn't allow another run. He worked six innings and scattered nine hits, walked one, and struck out two. Tonight was Beeler's first win in his last three starts and his 11th quality start in 16 outings with Iowa this year.
The Cubs extended their lead, and chased Tropeano (7-5) from the game, in the top of the fifth inning. 2B Logan Watkins led off with a double and stole third. With one out, the RedHawks intentionally walked Soler before 1B Mike Olt drove an RBI double to the gap in right-center. After a strikeout, Tropeano walked RF Brett Jackson to load the bases and gave way to RH Anthony Bass out of the bullpen. SS Elliot Soto greeted Bass with an RBI single to right and Lopez drew a walk to force in a run that extended the Cubs' lead to 7-3. The Cubs added their final run against Bass in the sixth inning. With one out, Bryant legged out an infield single and scored on a Soler double. Bryant has a hit and has scored a run in 11 straight games.
RH Armando Rivero followed Beeler with a perfect seventh inning, but gave up two runs in the eighth, ending a streak of 14.1 consecutive scoreless innings. RH Blake Parker came in with two men on base and got Jio Mier to fly out to end the eighth and then struck out two in the ninth to earn his league-leading 22nd save. Parker also saved 22 games for Iowa in 2009 and now has two of the top three single-season save totals in I-Cubs' history. Parker is the franchise's career leader with 63 saves.
This series continues on Saturday night at 7:05 PM. RH Dae-Eun Rhee (1-1, 4.50) will start for the Cubs against LH Luis Cruz (0-0, 0.00) for the RedHawks. The game will be broadcast live on AM 940, and streamed live at iowacubs.com, with the On-Deck Circle Pre-Game Show starting at 6:40 PM.