GRAND CHUTE, WI - The Cedar Rapids Kernels defeated the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 12-4 on Monday afternoon at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium by scoring nine runs in the last two innings. The Kernels picked up the win in the three-game series with the Rattlers with the victory in Monday's rubber game.
Wisconsin (60-66 overall, 29-28 second half) grabbed the lead in the first inning. Darren Seferina started the rally with an infield single. Tristen Lutz followed with a double to put runners on second and third. Eddie Silva drove in Seferina with a ground out for the 1-0 lead.
The Kernels (67-59, 35-22) took the lead in the top of the third inning. Ben Rodriguez drove a two-out double to the gap in left-center on a 3-2 pitch with the bases loaded to knock in all three runners for a 3-1 lead.
The Rattlers rallied to re-take the lead in the bottom of the third. Cedar Rapids starter Tyler Watson walked Seferina and Lutz with one out. KJ Harrison drew a two out walk to load the bases. A wild pitch by Watson allowed Seferina to score. Then, Gilbert Lara doubled to send Lutz and Harrison home for the 4-3 advantage.
That was where the score stayed as neither team mounted much offense in the middle of the game. Wisconsin got a pair of walks with two outs in the sixth inning, but left both runners. Wisconsin didn't have a hit after the double by Lara in the third.
Cedar Rapids didn't have a hit after the double by Rodriguez in the third inning until the eighth inning. But, when the Kernels bats woke up again, they blew past the Rattlers.
Gabriel Maciel bunted for a hit to start the inning. Michael Helman followed with a double. A two-base error by third baseman Eddie Silva on a grounder off the bat of Ryan Jeffers knocked in both runners and gave the Kernels a 5-4 lead. Trevor Larnach was next and he doubled in Jeffers to make it 6-4. A sacrifice fly by David Bañuelos tacked on a final run in the inning.
Cedar Rapids put the game away with five runs in the top of the ninth inning. Maciel started the inning with a triple and Helman singled to make it 8-4. Two more singles loaded the bases for a sacrifice fly by Rodriguez. Andrew Bechtold had a two-run single and Bañuelos capped the scoring with an RBI single.
The loss dropped the Rattlers to six games behind the Kernels in the race for the second half Western Division title. Wisconsin is now three games behind Beloit in the second half Western Division Wild Card chase. That deficit could expand to 3-1/2 games depending on the outcome of Beloit's game with Burlington tonight. Wisconsin has thirteen games left in the regular season.
The Timber Rattlers continue their homestand on Tuesday night with the first game of a three-game series against the Quad Cities River Bandits. Nelson Hernández (10-9, 4.88) is the scheduled starting pitcher for Wisconsin. Luis Garcia (5-2, 2.89) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the River Bandits. Game time is 7:05pm.
Wisconsin Badgers basketball legend Sam Dekker is coming back to the ballpark for Strike Out Cancer Night with Bergstrom Automotive and McClone on Tuesday. There are a limited number of tickets remaining for a Meet & Greet with Dekker in the Fox Communities Credit Union Fox Club from 5:30pm to 6:30pm before the game.
The first 1,000 fans to attend Tuesday's game will receive a bobblehead of Sam Dekker shooting the BratZooka! from the SkipperBud's boat during last year's Strike Out Cancer Night. Timber Ratters players and coaches will wear jerseys inspired by the University of Wisconsin during this game. These jerseys are up for bid in an online auction at TimberRattlersAuctions.com. The auction ends at 9:00pm on Tuesday.
Show your business card when you purchase a ticket and for $15 you will receive a box seat ticket, a beverage and your choice of brat or hot dog. The offer is also available to senior citizens (55 & older) and military personnel courtesy of Baker Tilly, WVBO, and AM1280 WNAM.
If you can't make it out to the ballpark, there are many ways to catch the action. The radio broadcast is on AM1280, WNAM starting with the Potawatomi Hotel & Casino Pregame Show at 6:45pm. The broadcast is also available on the Tune In and IHeart Radio apps. Subscribers to MiLB.tv can watch the game over the internet.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.