PEORIA, IL - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers were 0-12 in games that they trailed after eight innings. Yadiel Rivera made sure that record didn't reach 0-13. The Milwaukee Brewers shortstop prospect hit a long, two-run homer with one out in the top of the ninth inning on Sunday at Peoria Chiefs Stadium to turn a 2-1 Chiefs lead into a 3-2 Timber Rattlers victory. Jacob Barnes tossed solid relief to keep the Rattlers within striking distance and Seth Harvey picked up save number ten as Wisconsin reached 14 games over .500 with the comeback win.
The teams traded runs in the early innings. Peoria (22-28) scored first.
Zeke DeVoss started the Chiefs half of the third inning with a double. Taiwan Easterling followed with a triple to right-center to score DeVoss. Peoria was primed for a bigger inning, but Rattlers pitcher Will West struck out the next two batters and left Easterling stranded at third by getting the final out on a groundball.
Wisconsin (32-18) responded in the top of the fourth. Greg Hopkins doubled to left-center with one out and took third on an error. Cameron Garfield singled through the drawn-in infield to get Hopkins home with the tying run.
Easterling would double to start the Peoria fifth inning. He scored the run that put the Chiefs up 2-1 on a one out single by Ryan Cuneo.
Barnes relieved West after the single by Cuneo and got a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning. Barnes would toss 3-2/3 scoreless innings in relief, allow one hit, and strike out three to keep the Rattlers down a run.
Wisconsin had an opportunity to at least tie the game in the top of the eighth inning. Chadwin Stang reached on an error and Brandon Macias was hit by a pitch to start the inning. But, Jason Rogers grounded into a double play and a fly ball of the bat of Greg Hopkins was run down at the wall to keep Peoria up 2-1.
Yao-Lin Wang took over for Peoria in the bottom of the ninth inning and struck out the first batter of the inning. Max Walla was next and he lined single to left. The base hit by Walla extended his hitting streak to seven games and brought Rivera to the plate.
Wang missed with the first pitch to the Rattlers shortstop. His next pitch was right in Rivera's wheelhouse. Rivera hit a deep, towering drive to left that went out of the stadium, hit in the middle of the street, and came to rest just short of a building across the street. The two-run blast was the sixth homer of the season for Rivera and it put the Rattlers up 3-2.
Harvey, Wisconsin's closer, entered the game in the bottom of the ninth inning and set down the Chiefs in order to collect his tenth save of the season.
Game three of the series between the Timber Rattlers and Chiefs in a Memorial Day matinee. Wisconsin has Matt Miller (3-4, 4.24) as their scheduled starting pitcher. Peoria have Jose Rosario (3-5, 5.65) as their scheduled starter. Game time is 2:00pm at Peoria Chiefs Stadium. Tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 1:40pm.
Yadiel Rivera (6th, 1 on in 9th inning off Yao-Lin Wang, 1 out)
WP: Jacob Barnes (2-1)
LP: Yao-Lin Wang (2-2)
SAVE: Seth Harvey (10)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.