Offense Heats Up in 8-6 Kernels Triumph

Tyler Watson earns victory with strong season debut

By Chris Kleinhans-Schulz / Cedar Rapids Kernels | April 10, 2018 3:33 PM

PEORIA, ILL. - After 14 combined runs and over three hours of play, the Cedar Rapids Kernels notched an 8-6 win Tuesday at Dozer Park against the Peoria Chiefs. Ben Rortvedt recorded a career-high four hits and combined with Trey Cabbage and Alex Kirilloff for five doubles, five runs batted in, and four runs scored. Tyler Watson picked up the victory after allowing just one run and three hits over 5.1 innings pitched.

Three runs during the top of the second inning put the Kernels on the scoreboard. After an Andrew Becthold single and a Rortvedt double, Cabbage produced a double of his own to bring in both runners. Cabbage later scored himself on an RBI single by Mark Contreras.

Watson (1-0) became the first Kernels starting pitcher to earn a win this season. He produced 11 consecutive outs in one stretch and only allowed one run during the fifth when Juan Yepez hit a leadoff triple and scored on a wild pitch to Nick Plummer.

The Kernels produced four runs in the sixth inning for a 7-1 lead. A double play off the bat of Contreras allowed Rortvedt to score. Royce Lewis added an RBI single that plated Cabbage. Jose Miranda extended the inning with a single before Kirilloff hit a two-run double.

Kirilloff also delivered an eighth-inning RBI single for the Kernels while the Chiefs began to rally. Peoria's Bryce Denton produced an RBI double in the seventh inning and a run-scoring single within the eighth to ignite the comeback. The Chiefs tallied three more runs during the ninth but ultimately fell short, 8-6.

Cedar Rapids continued its undefeated start to the season by improving to 4-0 overall and 2-0 in this four-game series. Peoria dropped to 1-3, and Alvaro Seijas (0-1) suffered the loss after yielding three runs and seven hits over five innings of work.

This four-game series continues Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. with Kernels right-hander Randy Dobnak (0-0, -.--) and Chiefs right-hander Winston Nicacio (0-0, -.--) scheduled to start the contest. Catch the coverage on 1450 KMRY AM and 93.1 KMRY FM and online at and

Cedar Rapids' next homestand features three games and begins Friday, April 13. Fans can purchase tickets for all Cedar Rapids home games by visiting, going to the Kernels Ticket Office, or calling (319) 896-7560. The Kernels Ticket Office is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. On Sundays when the Kernels have a home game, the Kernels Ticket Office will open at 11:00 a.m.

The Cedar Rapids Kernels are the Midwest League affiliate of the Minnesota Twins. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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