BURLINGTON, IA - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers got another clutch hit from Taylor Brennan and scoreless relief from Clint Terry to record a 5-3 win over the Burlington Bees at Community Field on Saturday night. Brennan's two-run double in the top of the eighth inning broke a 3-3 tie and helped send Wisconsin to their third straight win to start the second half of the Midwest League season.
The Bees (38-34 overall, 0-3 second half) took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning. Erick Aguilera singled to drive in Angel Rosa from second base to put Burlington in front against Wisconsin starter Barrett Astin.
Rafael Neda doubled with one out in the top of the third. Neda was the first base runner against Bees starter Garrett Nuss. Angel Ortega followed with a single to center and Neda beat the throw home to tie the game. Ortega moved up to second on the throw to the plate and took third on a ground out by Francisco Castillo. Omar Garcia put the Rattlers (39-33, 3-0) in the lead with a bloop single to right-center to score Ortega.
Aguilera started the Burlington fourth inning with a double. Exicardo Cayones doubled with one out to drive in Aguilera to tie the game 2-2.
The Bees took the lead back in the bottom of the sixth inning. Stephen McGee doubled with one out against reliever Tyler Spurlin. Ryan Dalton was next and he doubled to drive in McGee for a 3-2 lead.
Burlington starting pitcher Garrett Nuss left after six innings and a season-high seven strikeouts. Then, Wisconsin rallied against the Bees bullpen.
Brian Loconsole got the first two outs in the top of the seventh, but Jose Pena kept the inning alive with a single to left. Garrett Cooper worked the count full against Loconsole before lining a single to right to move Pena to third with the tying run. Rafael Neda's grounder to third could have ended the inning. However, Angel Rosa's throw to second for the force on Cooper was wild and would up in right field to allow Pena to score and tied the game 3-3.
Terry took over for Spurlin in the bottom of the seventh inning and tossed a scoreless frame to keep the game even.
Garcia started Wisconsin's eighth inning rally with a single. Michael Ratterree drew a walk and Clint Coulter's check swing blooper dropped in for a single in shallow right to load the bases. That brought Brennan, who has three walkoff hits and a grand slam for the Timber Rattlers in 2014, to the plate.
Loconsole was ahead of Brennan 1-2 when the Rattlers third baseman fouled off a tough pitch to get another swing. Then, Brennan lined the next pitch on one hop off the wall in left for a double that scored Garcia and Ratterree for a 5-3 lead.
Terry got the first two outs via the strikeout in the eighth, but gave up consecutive two-out singles to Dalton and Erick Salcedo. Kody Eaves got a hold of a 2-0 pitch from Terry, but Ratterree made the catch on the warning track in right-center with his back nearly against the 365' sign.
The Rattlers closed out the win when Terry recorded a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth. Terry walked one and struck out five in his three shutout innings to earn his first Midwest League victory.
Wisconsin is 14-3 in June and has won seven of their last eight games.
The final game of the series is Sunday afternoon at Community Field. Taylor Williams (4-1, 3.18) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. The Bees send Victor Alcantara (4-3, 3.98) to the bump. Game time is 2:00pm. Tune in for the broadcast on AM1280, WNAM or IHeartRadio starting with the Miller Lite Pregame Show at 1:40pm.
WP: Clint Terry (1-1)
LP: Brian Loconsole (2-3)
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.