Peoria, IL - The Peoria Chiefs scored three runs in the bottom of the second and held on to beat the Kane County Cougars 4-2 in the series opener on Friday night. The Chiefs improve to 21-17 on the season with game two of the series set for Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
The Chiefs struck first in the bottom of the second against Cougars starter Tyler Keele. Julio Rodriguez led off with single to left and Matt Fiedler doubled to put two runners in scoring position with nobody out. Nick Plummer pulled a double down the right-field line to score Rodriguez and Fiedler as the Chiefs took a 2-0 lead. Plummer moved to third on a groundout up the middle by Jose Martinez and Scott Hurst scored Plummer on a single to right field for a 3-0 edge.
Peoria pushed another run across in the bottom of the fifth inning. Hurst and Irving Lopez singled with one out to put two runners on. Montero delivered a two-out single to drive in Hurst for a 4-0 advantage.
The Cougars got on the board in the top of the seventh against reliever Kodi Whitley. With two outs, Jancarlos Cintron hit a solo home run over the left field wall as Kane County trailed 4-1.
The longball was used again by Kane County in the top of the eighth to narrow the gap. Renae Martinez led off with a solo homer out to left as the margin was cut to 4-2.
Thomas St. Clair was on the mound to finish the game. Cintron reached on a walk and Yanqui walked with one out to put two runners on. St. Clair struck out Martinez looking and Eduardo Diaz lined out to Montero at third as the Chiefs won 4-2.
Jake Walsh (2-1) earned the win throwing six shutout innings on four hits with 10 strikeouts and one walk. Whitley gave up two runs on three hits in one inning with one walk and one strikeout. St. Clair picked up the save throwing two hitless shutout innings with two walks and four strikeouts.
Notes… Walsh struck out a career-high 10 batters…Martinez made his 2018 Chiefs debut… Whitley entered Friday without surrendering a home run in his career…Friday marked the return of former Chiefs player and current Kane County manager Blake Lalli who was ejected in the bottom of the eighth inning…Plummer has a nine-game hit streak, one off his professional career high from 2015… Hurst recorded his seventh multi-hit game…St. Clair earned his team-high third save of the season…The Chiefs host Kane County in game two of the series at 6:30 p.m. Saturday on Armed Forces Night… The first 1,000 Fans 13 & Over will receive a Military Camo Cap courtesy of Dick's Sporting Goods…The Chiefs will wear military inspired uniforms which will be auctioned after being worn again on July 4…Fireworks will follow the game and select Chiefs players will sign autographs when gates open as part of Signature Saturday… The Chiefs will start RHP Johan Oviedo (1-3, 6.30) and Kane County will start RHP Brian Shaffer (1-2, 2.45)…The broadcast can be heard, starting with the Pre-Game Show at 6:15 p.m. on www.peoriachiefs.com/listenlive and is also available on the Peoria Chiefs Network in the Tune-In Radio App…The game is also available on MiLB.tv for subscribers.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.