CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA - Six consecutive singles in the seventh inning Saturday pushed the Cedar Rapids Kernels ahead of the Beloit Snappers within a 5-4 win in front of 3,881 fans at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium. Gilberto Celestino led the offense by recording the franchise's first five-hit game in more than two years.
A pair of first-inning runs provided Beloit (21-27, 48-68) with a quick 2-0 lead. Max Schuemann doubled to open the game and later scored during a double play. A two-out error allowed Nick Osborne to add another run, but a 9-6-2 relay started by DaShawn Keirsey retired John Jones to end the inning.
The Kernels (28-20, 67-51) broke up the shutout in the fourth. Keirsey reached on a two-out error, and Trevor Casanova followed with an RBI single that trimmed the difference to 2-1.
Saturday's seventh-inning single streak turned a Cedar Rapids deficit into a 5-2 edge. Celestino collected the first single in the streak and eventually tied the game by scoring via wild pitch. Yunior Severino's two-run single would break the tie, and Albee Weiss drove in a run of his own with the sixth and final single of the frame.
Beloit chipped away at the lead but still lost by a 5-4 margin. Osborne drew a bases-loaded walk that forced in Michael Woodworth within the eighth. Santis Sanchez's RBI groundout drove in Lester Madden during the ninth.
Celestino went 5-of-5 with four singles and one double in the first five-hit game of his professional career. Prior to his career night, Jermaine Palacios had the last five-hit performance for the Kernels in a 15-5 victory June 9, 2017 against the Burlington Bees.
Brian Rapp (4-1), who was pitching on his 24th birthday, picked up the victory while Brandon Withers (3-5) was saddled with a blown save and the loss. Rapp yielded just two runs over the final three innings of play and tallied a team-high four strikeouts. Withers allowed four runs which all came during the seventh.
Sunday's matinée between Cedar Rapids and Beloit is scheduled for 2:05 p.m., and Kernels right-hander Andrew Cabezas (4-6, 3.82) will square off with Snappers right-hander Aiden McIntyre (3-8, 4.88). Chris Kleinhans-Schulz will have the call on 1450 KMRY AM and 93.1 KMRY FM and also online at www.kmryradio.com, www.kernels.com, and MiLB.TV.
Western Fraternal Life Kids Eat Free Sunday features a special coupon for all kids aged 12 and under to receive a free hot dog, popcorn, and drink. After the game, all fans can run the bases, play catch in the outfield, and get autographs from the Kernels courtesy of Prairie Farms and 104.5 KDAT. Travel Advisors Baseball Bingo includes a chance to qualify for the chance to win a trip to Minneapolis for a Minnesota Twins game. Papa Balloon and Face Painting by Kennedy will be available, too.
Fans can purchase tickets for all Cedar Rapids Kernels home games by visiting www.kernels.com, going to the Kernels Ticket Office, or calling (319) 896-7560. The Kernels Ticket Office is open from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturdays. 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.