GRAND CHUTE, WI - Jorge Soler had four hits and the Peoria Chiefs right fielder led the way to a 9-2 win over the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Saturday night at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium. Soler homered, doubled, singled twice, stole a base, and drove in two runs. The Chiefs collected 14 hits and Peoria starting pitcher Michael Jensen reached double digits in wins. Rattlers starter David Goforth struck out seven, but took the loss.
Peoria (55-69 overall, 20-34 second half) grabbed the early lead as Tim Saunders drove in a run with a single in the top of the first inning.
Wisconsin (71-52, 27-27) answered in the bottom of the second inning. Yadiel Rivera singled to knock Greg Hopkins in to tie the game.
The Rattlers took the lead with an unearned run in the fourth inning. Rivera reached on an error with one out and stole second. A walk and an error loaded the bases. Chadwin Stang's run scoring fielder's choice scored Rivera and the Rattlers were up 2-1.
The Chiefs came back in the top of the fifth inning. They loaded the bases on three singles. Saunders lifted a fly ball to medium right field. Stang made the catch and a strong throw to the plate, but Peoria catcher Yaniel Cabezas just beat the throw to score the tying run. Peoria would score another run in the inning as pitcher David Goforth's pickoff throw to first with runners on first and third was wild to allow Oliver Zapata to score the go ahead run from third.
Soler launched a home run to the Peoria bullpen in left-center to start the sixth inning and put the Chiefs in front 4-2.
Goforth left after six innings. He allowed four runs - three earned - on nine hits. Goforth also set a professional single game high for strikeouts with seven.
Jensen went five innings, but allowed two runs - one earned. Jensen struck out seven, too. He was in line to pick up his tenth win of the season after he left the game. The Peoria batters removed all doubt in the seventh inning.
The Chiefs had runners on first and second with two outs and the crowd was ready for the seventh inning stretch. Then, Soler lined a double down the third base line for an RBI against reliever Maverick Lasker. Jacob Rogers followed with a two run single and the Chiefs went up 7-2. Bijan Rademacher kept the inning going with a single. Then, Cabezas doubled in a run. Lasker hit Zapata to load the bases and Zeke DeVoss drew his second walk of the inning to force in a run to put the Chiefs up 9-2.
The Rattlers had only one hit over their final three at bats and didn't threaten to score.
Game two of the series is Sunday afternoon. Chad Thompson (4-2, 5.16) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. Yao-Lin Wang (3-3, 2.98) is set to start for the Chiefs. Game time is 1:05pm.
Sunday is the final Brewers Sunday presented by 107.5, The Fan of the 2012 season. Timber Rattlers players will wear their Brewer-themed jerseys for the last time and there will be a live auction after the game. Fans will be able to bid on their favorite jerseys and take them home. Proceeds from the auction will go to Children's Hospital of Wisconsin.
Also on Sunday, Time Warner Cable customers can receive up to four half-price reserved bleacher tickets when they show their TWC bill at the ticket window at time of ticket purchase. Fans are invited to play catch on the field before the game courtesy of American Eagle. An autograph session featuring the players will take place during the auction.
If you can't make it out to the ballpark tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 12:45pm. Sunday's game is also available to subscribers of MiLB.TV.
Jorge Soler (2nd, 0 on in 6th inning off David Goforth, 0 out)
WP: Michael Jensen (10-5)
LP: David Goforth (8-8)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.