CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA - Aaron Whitefield's offense and Anthony Marzi's pitching propelled the Cedar Rapids Kernels to a 2-1 win Sunday against the Peoria Chiefs. The Kernels picked up their season-high-tying fourth consecutive victory and have a chance to sweep this four-game series Monday afternoon at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
Peoria (10-8, 40-47) scored the first run of the contest for the third time this series. Stefan Trosclair and Danny Hudzina posted back-to-back singles in the second inning to put runners at the corners. Juan Yepez hit a sacrifice fly that plated Trosclair for a 1-0 Chiefs lead.
Whitefield blasted Cedar Rapids (10-8, 49-39) into a 1-1 tie within the bottom of the third. He launched a solo shot to left field that evened the score. Whitefield also tied Lewin Diaz for the active team high in home runs with his 10th round-tripper.
Marzi and Peoria's Juan Perez kept the contest tied over the next several innings. Marzi did not allow any hits in his final five frames and faced one batter over the minimum in that stretch. Perez stranded runners at second base in the third, fourth and sixth innings.
The Kernels took the lead, 2-1, during the seventh. A strikeout coupled with a wild pitch and an error allowed Gorge Munoz to reach second base. Christian Cavaness followed with a sacrifice bunt and reached on an error. Whitefield produced a sacrifice fly and drove in Munoz for the deciding run.
Cedar Rapids pushed Marzi (2-0) into a winning decision with Whitefield's sacrifice fly. Marzi only allowed one run, one walk, and two hits over seven innings pitched while tallying six strikeouts. Ryan Mason tossed a scoreless eighth inning for his third hold. Colton Davis worked around a leadoff single in the ninth and claimed his second save.
Perez (2-2) was charged for both of the Kernels' runs and took the loss Sunday. He yielded two runs over six-plus innings and recorded a team-high four strikeouts.
This four-game series wraps up at 12:05 p.m. Monday. The probable pitchers are Kernels right-hander Eduardo Del Rosario (7-4, 4.69) and Chiefs right-hander Mike O'Reilly (7-2, 1.76). Follow the action with Chris Kleinhans-Schulz online at www.kmryradio.com, www.kernels.com, and MiLB.TV.
Monday's finale is a Noon Game courtesy of Z 102.9. The Kernels will offer a Noon Game Combo Special for a regular sandwich, a choice of chips or popcorn, and a choice of a 16 oz. regular draft beer or 20 oz. bottled soda or water for just $8.50. Plus, regular hot dogs are $1.50 apiece, and small popcorn, chips, and ice cream sandwiches are $1.00 each on Mark Down Monday.
Fans can purchase tickets for all 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 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.