(Cedar Rapids, IA) - The Burlington Bees (59-77) avoided a series sweep on Friday night with a 5-4 win over the Cedar Rapids Kernels (74-63) at Perfect Game Field.
Cedar Rapids grabbed the lead in the bottom of the first inning. With one out, Aaron Whitefield laid down a bunt single and then came home to score when the next batter, Jimmy Kerrigan, homered to left field, giving the Kernels a 2-0 lead.
The Bees didn't wait long to answer, grabbing the lead in the second inning. Richie Fecteau was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning, giving the Bees their first base runner of the game. After a strikeout, John Schuknecht smashed his team-leading 10th home run of the season, tying the game at two. With two outs, Franklin Navarro and Juan Moreno hit back-to-back singles. Navarro then came home to score when Leonardo Rivas reached on a two-base error, giving the Bees a 3-2 lead.
Burlington added to its lead in the third inning. Brandon Sandoval started the inning by sending a triple to the wall in left-center. Richie Fecteau then upped the Bees' lead to 4-2 by driving in Sandoval with a groundout.
With one out in the top of the fifth inning, Brandon Sandoval singled to right and then stole second base. With two outs, Brennan Morgan singled to left, scoring Sandoval, pushing the Bees' lead to 5-2. The Kernels came right back to make it a one-run game. For the second time in the game, Jimmy Kerrigan belted a two-run homer, cutting the Bees' lead to 5-4 in the fifth inning.
The Bees bullpen would do the rest as Zac Ryan and Jonah Wesely combined to throw four shutout innings, striking out ten batters, securing the 5-4 win. Bees' starter Jose Suarez (5-1) earned the win while Charlie Barnes (2-1) was charged with the loss and Jonah Wesely (2) earned the save.
The Bees will begin their final home stand of the season on Saturday when they host the Clinton LumberKings at 6:30 p.m. at Community Field. Chris Rodriguez will make the start for the Bees against Ljay Newsome for the LumberKings. It's a US Bank Friends and Family Saturday as all fans will be able to run the bases. Saturday is also the final fireworks show of the season. For tickets, visit gobees.com or stop by the Bees' office. For more information, call the Bees at (319)-754-5705.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.