BURLINGTON, IA - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers fell behind the Burlington Bees early on Monday night at Community Field. But, the Rattlers used three home runs and perfect relief from Taylor Mangum to rally for an 8-6 victory.
Burlington (31-52 overall, 5-13 second half) scored three runs on four hits in the first inning to grab the lead. Kevin Moesquit and Anthony Bemboom both singled to start the inning. Andrew Ray followed with a double to left to score Moesquit and put Bemboom on third. Wade Hinkle was next. His grounder to second drove in Bemboom and sent Ray to third. Rattlers starting pitcher Jorge Lopez got a strikeout for the second out, but a single by Chance Ross with two outs scored Ray for a 3-0 lead.
The Bees tacked on a run in the bottom of the second inning. Garrett Cannizaro doubled to start the inning, but he was still at second with two outs. However, Moesquit singled to left with two outs and Cannizaro scored for a 4-0 Burlington lead.
Wisconsin (36-47, 7-11) took advantage of an error in the top of the third inning to get on the scoreboard in the top of the third. Michael Reed reached on the two-out miscue to get on base and Taylor was next. The Rattlers centerfielder lined a homer to deep left. The two-run shot was the eighth of the season for Taylor and cut the Bees lead to two runs.
But, Burlington responded with two runs in the bottom of the third. Lopez walked the first two batters, but made a nice play on an attempted sacrifice bunt to get the force play at third. But, Lopez would throw a wild pitch with Ross at the plate to move both runners into scoring position. Ross singled in both runners on the next pitch and the Bees were back up by four runs.
The Rattlers had several answers for those runs by the Bees. Mike Garza led off the top of the fourth with a single. Parker Berberet smashed the next pitch over the wall in left for a two-run home run. In the fifth, Victor Roache stepped to the plate with one out and an 0-2 pitch due. Roache sent a towering drive to left for his eighth home run of the season to pull the Rattlers to within a run.
Wisconsin took the lead in the top of the sixth. Chris McFarland doubled to start the frame. Adam Giacalone pulled a grounder to the right side of the infield to move McFarland to third. There were two outs with McFarland still on third when Alfredo Rodriguez took his turn. Rodriguez sent a grounder to deep short. The ball was bobbled and McFarland scored on the error to tie the game as Rodriguez wound up on first base.
Reed was next and he ran the count to 3-1. Rodriguez took off on the next pitch to Reed, who lined the ball to the gap in left-center. Rodriguez scored easily as Reed dove into third ahead of the throw for his ninth triple of the season. That hit gave the Rattlers a 7-6 lead.
Wisconsin picked up a little insurance in the top of the eighth. Adrian Williams singled and was sacrificed to second by Rodriguez. Reed's bloop single to right got Williams to third. Taylor surprised the Bees by pushing a bunt single up the first base line to get Williams home for an 8-6 lead.
Not that Taylor Mangum needed any insurance. The Timber Rattlers reliever took over for Lopez in the bottom of the fifth inning and proceeded to retire all fifteen batters he faced in the game. Mangum earned his second win of the season and struck out five.
The Timber Rattlers are off on Tuesday. They return to action on Wednesday with game one of a six-game homestand at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium.
The opponents on Wednesday are the Fort Wayne TinCaps, Wisconsin's foe from the 2012 Midwest League Championship Series. Preston Gainey (3-5, 6.46) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. Fort Wayne will send Zach Eflin (4-5, 3.30) to the mound. Game time on Wednesday is 7:05pm.
Wednesday is a Bang for Your Buck Night with WIXX. That means $1 Cher-Make hot dogs, $1 Pepsi Products, and $1 Miller Beers! It's Red Smith Night, too. Come out to see the scholarship winners from the Red Smith Banquet in a pregame presentation. Plus, the first 500 fans to attend the game will receive BamBams from Cars.com.
If you can't make it out to the game on Wednesday, Time Warner Cable SportsChannel will have the television broadcast beginning at 7:00pm. You may also tune in for the radio broadcast on AM1280, WNAM on timberrattlers.com, or through IHeartRadio starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 6:45pm. Subscribers to MiLB.TV may catch the action, too.
Tyrone Taylor (8th, 1 on in 3rd inning off Ryan Crowley, 2 out)
Parker Berberet (4th, 1 on in 4th inning off Ryan Crowley, 0 out)
Victor Roache (8th, 0 on in 5th inning off Ryan Crowley, 1 out)
WP: Taylor Mangum (2-4)
LP: Alex Blackford (0-1)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.