Bowling Green, KY: Starters Brailyn Marquez and Easton McGee both threw five shutout innings in game one of a three game series between the South Bend Cubs and Bowling Green Hot Rods in Kentucky on Monday night. Marquez showed his best control so far in 2019, striking out six and walking just one. In a 3-0 shutout, the Cubs earned their 20th win of the year.
On the Bowling Green side, McGee allowed no runs and just four hits in the five frames to lower his ERA to 1.83. After a pitching change in the 6th inning, South Bend went to work. With cleanup man Jonathan Sierra coming to the plate, he crushed the first pitch from lefty Cristopher Sanchez deep into the night sky and off of the video board for a 1-0 lead.
For Sierra, it was his second monster shot of the season after he homered off of the 1st Source Bank Performance Center at Four Winds Field in April.
After Marquez departed, Ryan Lawlor picked up right where he left off. The southpaw fired three scoreless frames and protected the 1-0 lead to earn the hold.
Before Ethan Roberts came on for the save in the 9th, South Bend added two more runs as Tyler Durna led off the inning with an infield single. After Durna stole second base, Christopher Morel came in the clutch and drilled a line drive into the left-center field gap to score Durna to make it 2-0 Cubs.
A batter later, Eric Gonzalez reached on an error and Morel jogged home. The 3-0 safety net was gifted to Roberts for the 9th.
The closer Roberts shut the door and earned his fifth save of the year in the shutout win. With 20 wins now under their belt, the Cubs will go for their third straight series victory tomorrow night with right-hander Derek Casey on the mound for a 7:35 first pitch.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.