PEORIA, IL - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers beat the Peoria Chiefs 3-1 on Memorial Day at Peoria Chiefs Stadium. It was the third win in a row for the Rattlers, who are 5-1 in the first six games of their current 13-game road trip. Max Walla broke a 1-1 tie with an RBI single in the eighth inning and Seth Harvey escaped jams in the eighth and ninth innings to get the Rattlers to fifteen games over the .500 mark.
Rafael Neda gave the Rattlers (33-18) a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Peoria starting pitcher Jose Rosario struck out the first two batters he faced in the inning. Carlos George kept the inning going by dropping in a bloop single to center. Neda followed with a line drive to the gap in left-center. George scored easily from first base on the double by Neda.
The Chiefs (22-29) tied the game by scoring a run without a hit in the bottom of the sixth. Rattlers starting pitcher Matt Miller walked Zeke DeVoss with one out. Miller threw wildly to first on a pickoff throw and allowed DeVoss to go to second. DeVoss would steal third and score the tying run on a sacrifice fly by Wes Darvill.
Neda started a rally in the top of the eighth inning when he was hit by a pitch from Peoria reliever Austin Reed hit him to lead off the inning. Adrian Williams dropped a perfect sacrifice bunt to move pinch runner John Dishon to second base. Walla grounded a single through the right side of the infield with two outs and Dishon scored without a play to make it 2-1 Wisconsin.
Peoria threatened in the bottom of the eighth inning as reliever Michael Strong walked a pair of runners with one out. Closer Seth Harvey came on and got a strikeout and a fly ball to left to get out of the jam and keep the Rattlers up by a run.
Nick Ramirez padded Wisconsin's lead with a leadoff homer in the top of the ninth. The tape-measure shot by Ramirez cleared the batter's eye in center field and made the score 3-1.
Harvey allowed a pair of singles to start the ninth inning and a sacrifice bunt moved the tying runs into scoring position. Pin-Chien Chen looked like he would tie the game with a sinking line drive to right, but Walla made a spectacular diving catch to deny Chen and record the second out of the inning. Then, Harvey got the final out on a routine grounder to shortstop for his eleventh save of the season.
The final game of the four game series at Peoria is Tuesday night. Drew Gagnon (3-1, 3.08) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. Peoria has Kyler Burke (1-2, 2.31) as their scheduled starter. Game time is 6:30pm. Tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or timberrattlers.com starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:10pm.
Nick Ramirez (2nd, 0 on in 9th inning off Austin Reed, 0 out)
WP: Michael Strong (1-0)
LP: Austin Reed (2-3)
SAVE: Seth Harvey (11)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.