DAVENPORT, IA - The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers earned a split in their four-game series with the Quad Cities River Bandits at Modern Woodmen Park on the strength of a nine-run eighth inning on Thursday night. The Rattlers pounded the River Bandits 11-1 for the win.
Wisconsin (22-25) scored thanks to a two-out rally in the top of the fourth. KJ Harrison doubled with two outs. Gabriel García followed with a double and Harrison scored for a 1-0 lead.
The River Bandits (25-21) tied the game in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run by Colton Shaver.
The home run was the only run allowed by Wisconsin starting pitcher Alec Bettinger, who made his fourth straight quality start. The right-hander went six innings, allowed four hits, walked none, and struck out three. He was in line for the win after the Rattlers rallied to take the lead back in the top of the seventh inning.
Pat McInerney walked with one out and stole second with two outs. Nick Roscetti, who had four hits in the game, followed with a single to right and McInerney beat the throw to the plate for a 2-1 lead.
Reliever Gabe Friese retired the River Bandits in order in the bottom of the seventh. Then, Wisconsin exploded for their biggest inning of the season as they scored nine runs in the eighth.
The eighth inning started with Demi Orimoloye reaching second on an error and taking third on a wild pitch. García sent a grounder to first and the throw came home, but Orimoloye beat it to give the Rattlers a 3-1 advantage. River Bandits pitcher Enoli Parades retired the next batter before being replaced by Dariel Aquino. The Rattlers feasted on Aquino.
McInerney doubled to drive in García for a 4-1 lead. Aquino walked Devin Hairston and gave up a single to Roscetti to load the bases. A passed ball let McInerney score. Then, Joantgel Segovia doubled to drive in the other runners for a 7-1 lead. Aquino walked the next two batters to reload the bases and Harrison unloaded them when he launched a home run to left-center for the first Wisconsin grand slam of the season. The nine-run inning finally ended when Adam Bleday took over for Aquino and got the final out.
Gabe Friese, who started in the bottom of the seventh to protect a 2-1 lead, worked a scoreless eighth and a scoreless ninth to close out the game and earn his fourth save of the season.
One down not for the Timber Rattlers was when starting catcher Payton Henry had to leave the game. Henry beat out an infield single in the second inning while avoiding a tag by the first baseman, but he stumbled hard over the bag and came up limping. Henry stayed in the game to run the bases, but left the game after he was erased on a double play.
Wisconsin one game one of the series 2-1. The River Bandits took game two 8-0 and game three 8-4 before the Rattlers won the final game of the series.
The Timber Rattlers continue their road trip with game one of a four-game series against the Kane County Cougars on Friday night. Bowden Francis (1-1, 3.31) is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers. Kane County has named Jhoan Duran (1-0, 3.00) as their starter. Game time in Geneva, Illinois is 6:30pm.
The radio broadcast is on AM1280, WNAM starting with the Potawatomi Hotel & Casino Pregame Show at 6:10pm. 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.