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MWL: Kernels rattle off 19 hits in win over Wisconsin
CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA -- The Cedar Rapids Kernels offense scored in six of eight innings on the way to a 15-5 victory over the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium on Tuesday night. Every Kernel in the batting order recorded at least one hit with the team hammering a season-high 19 hits on the evening.
J.D. Williams reached the bases in all five trips to the box by going 4-for-4 with four runs scored along with one walk. Ryan Walker had four RBI’s on two hits while five other teammates collected one run-batted-in. Brandon Bixler picked up his fifth victory of the season while the entire pitching staff for Cedar Rapids recorded 11 strikeouts while holding Wisconsin’s bats to just six hits.
For the third time in the past four games the Kernels got on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first. Bryan Haar collected a two-out RBI-single that drove in Ryan Walker for the early 1-0 advantage.
Wisconsin answered with a two-run homerun off the bat of Jacob Brennan in the top of the second to take the lead 2-1.
].D. Williams powered the Kernels back in front 3-2 in the bottom of the second with his first homerun of the year. The blast over right field drove in Jason Kanzler who led off the inning with a double.
Jose Pena tied the game at 3-3 in the top of the fourth when his double-play groundball scored Brennan for the second time in the contest.
Tristan Archer (3-4) departed for the Rattlers with men on the bases in the fourth. Archer allowed seven runs on ten hits during 3 2/3 innings on the mound. The starter allowed one walk and struck out four in the losing effort.
Chris Razo entered in relief midway through the bottom of the fourth. The Wisconsin reliever surrendered three runs on three hits over the span of 1 1/3 frames. Razo walked one and fanned four during his relief outing.
The Kernels bats came alive in the fourth for four runs and five total hits. Williams began the scoring off a one-out double by Jon Murphy. Ryan Walker knocked in Tanner Vavra in the next at-bat with a sacrifice fly to center to make it a 5-3 lead.
Cedar Rapids rallied for two more runs in the fourth on two outs to go up 7-3. Chad Christensen singled in Murphy and later scored on Mitch Garver’s double down the left field line.
Lewis Thorpe compiled three runs allowed on two total hits during his four-inning outing. Thorpe sent down five batters on strikes and walked three in his sixth start of the season.
Brandon Bixler (5-4) took the mound to open the fifth for the Kernels. Bixler finished after two innings and allowed one run on two hits while striking out two in the winning effort.
Michael Ratterree cut into the Kernels lead 7-4 in the fifth with an RBI-single to center that brought Omar Garcia to the plate.
Zach Quintana began the fifth out of the pen for Wisconsin and allowed five runs on six hits over three innings in relief. Quintana walked five and struck out one in the appearance.
The Kernels offense didn’t slow down in the fifth with three additional runs on three hits to make it a 10-4 lead. Alex Swim led-off the inning with a single into left and was brought in on an errant throw to first on a Tanner Vavra bunt-single in the infield. Williams walked to join Vavra on the paths and Walker cleared the bases with a two-out double into centerfield.
Cedar Rapids plated two more in the sixth to push the edge to 12-4. On the same play, Williams drove in Haar on a RBI-single to center on a ball that was mishandled in the outfield. The fourth Wisconsin error allowed Swim to come across the plate.
Nick Burdi came out of the bullpen to start the seventh and struck out the side in his lone, scoreless frame.
The Kernels sent Jake Reed to the hill in the eighth to make his debut for Cedar Rapids. Reed gave up one unearned run on one hit along with one strikeout during his Midwest League debut.
Brennan recorded his third run-batted-in during the eighth for Wisconsin on a single to left field. Clint Coulter scored on the play to make to score 12-5.
Cedar Rapids made it a double-digit lead in the eighth by plating three runs in eighth. Williams recorded his fourth RBI of the night on a double to center field that brought in Swim. Kanzler was brought in on a Vavra RBI-single into right field and Williams scored the final run on a Ryan Walker sacrifice fly to deep left to bring the score to 15-5.
Hudson Boyd closed out the ninth for the Kernels and allowed no hits, run or base runners during his lone inning of work.
The Kernels continue the series with Wisconsin on Wednesday evening at 6:35 p.m. It’s another Free Money Wednesday, sponsored by First Federal Credit Union. $500 will be given away at the main gates at every Wednesday home game with $100 as the top cash prize. It’s also Hall of Fame Night where the Kernels will recognize members of the 2014 Cedar Rapids Baseball Hall of Fame (Mike Trout, Chris Sabo, Verna Nance, Tom Barbee and Ron Gonder) on the field before the game.
RHP Ryan Eades (5-8, 6.37) will take the mound for Cedar Rapids and square off against LHP Clint Terry (1-2, 3.77).