Rattlers score seven in the fourth on the way to a big win

By Chris Mehring / Wisconsin Timber Rattlers | May 24, 2011 8:09 PM ET

PEORIA, IL - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers put a big number on the board in the fourth inning, waited out a rain delay of over an hour, and cruised to a 10-2 win over the Peoria Chiefs Tuesday night at O'Brien Field. Reggie Keen and TJ Mittelstaedt each had two hits, two runs scored, and two RBI for the Rattlers. Mike Walker hit his ninth homer of the season and Brian Garman pitched five scoreless innings of relief for Wisconsin.

Peoria (25-20) threatened first as they loaded the bases with one out in the bottom against Rattlers pitcher Tyler Thornburg. But, Thornburg escaped with a grounder back to the mound that turned into a force out at the plate and another force out to end the inning with the game still scoreless.

Robbie Garvey started the Wisconsin second inning with a single and a stolen base, but he was still at second with two outs. Keen delivered a two-out, RBI single to plate Garvey with the first run off Peoria starter Su-Min Jung. Nick Shaw was next and he doubled off the wall in right to send Keen home. Mittelstaedt came through with another RBI single and the Rattlers were up 3-0.

In the fourth, the Rattlers (26-19) sent 10 men to the plate and scored seven times as the steady rain intensified. Franklin Romero started the inning with a triple. One out later, Tyler Roberts doubled to the gap in left-center to send Romero home. Jung got the second out, but had trouble finding the third out for the second inning in a row.

Keen doubled home Roberts. Shaw singled to send Keen to third. Mittelstaedt singled in Keen and sent Shaw to second base. Chris Dennis singled to drive in Shaw and that was all for Jung.

Rattlers slugger Mike Walker welcomed Peoria reliever Yohan Gonzalez to the game by crushing a three-run homer over the batting eye in center field. Walker's ninth home run of the season gave the Rattlers a 10-0 lead.

A large streak of lightning flashed above O'Brien Field just before Thornburg was ready to throw the first pitch of the bottom of the fourth inning and the umpires called for the tarp to be placed on the field. The game resumed after a delay of 64 minutes.

Thornburg did not return to the game on the restart. He scattered five hits and two walks over his three innings, but extended his scoreless streak to 10-1/3 innings pitched.

Brian Garman started the bottom of the fourth for the Rattlers and allowed two hits and struck out six over five scoreless innings.

The Chiefs scored two unearned runs off Tom Keeling - thanks to three Wisconsin errors - in the bottom of the ninth, but they would get no closer than that.

The Rattlers and Chiefs are scheduled to play a doubleheader on Wednesday night at O'Brien Field. Wisconsin has Charly Bashara (2-2, 4.45) and Jimmy Nelson (1-3, 4.50) are the scheduled starting pitchers for the twinbill. Peoria will send Graham Hicks (0-2, 2.45) and Cam Greathouse (2-3, 5.49) out as their planned starters. Game one will start at 5:00pm.

Tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 4:40pm.

WP: Brian Garman (2-1)
LP: Su-Min Jung (2-1)

TIME: 2:35 (1:04 delay)
ATTN: 1,521

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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