Clinton, IA - A night after the Clinton LumberKings (26-32, 56-70) led on three occasions but fell short in a 10-9 loss, they trailed the entire ballgame in an 8-3 defeat by the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (31-27, 67-60). The visitors plated two runs off of Clinton starter Jose Flores (3-5) in the first inning and never relinquished the lead. Flores allowed five runs, one earned, over 2+ innings, as the righty left with an injury three batters into the third inning.
A two-run ninth inning propelled Wisconsin to a win Tuesday, and two runs in each of the first two innings Wednesday had the same result. An RBI double by Clint Coulter, his first of two RBI's on the night, made it 2-0 in the first, while Omar Garcia's RBI single and a failed pickoff play put the Timber Rattlers ahead 4-0 after two innings.
Flores allowed the first two men to reach in the third, and came up hobbling after his first pitch to Sthervin Matos missed the strike zone. The righty required assistance leaving the field and is day-to-day. Three errors with the starter in the game led to four unearned runs, as Flores picked up the loss.
The LumberKings scored their only run off of Wisconsin starter Javy Salas (1-1) in the third. Following a double by Luis Caballero, Brett Thomas recorded his fifth RBI of the series with a single. Salas, who picked up a loss vs. Clinton last week, allowed just five hits and struck out six in his first Midwest League victory.
Down 6-1 in the eighth, Clinton rallied with two runs, but left the potential tying run in the on-deck circle. Joe DeCarlo's two-RBI double off of Chris Razo made it 6-3, the eventual final. Razo retired the final four he faced, as the righty struck out four over two innings.
The loss dropped the LumberKings five games back of the Timber Rattlers in the wild card standings, while Wisconsin built its lead to three over the Peoria Chiefs. The victory finished the season series between Clinton and Wisconsin, as the Timber Rattlers took the final two and nine of 16 season meetings, which included a 7-2 record at Ashford University Field. Justin Seager was the only Clinton starter to record multiple hits. Tyler O'Neill had his six game hit streak end, while DeCarlo lengthened his to 11.
After a 3-3 homestand vs. Beloit and Wisconsin, the LumberKings will begin a short trip to Kane County. The three game series at Fifth Third Bank Ballpark begins Thursday night. First pitch for all three games in Geneva, IL is set for 6:30. Blake Holovach (6-4, 3.87) and Jonathan Martinez (9-5, 3.47) are scheduled to start the opener. The LumberKings radio broadcast for all three games can be heard on WCCI 100.3 FM, WCCIRadio.com, and LumberKings.com.