The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers got out to a fast start against the Quad Cities River Bandits on Thursday night at Modern Woodmen Park. However, the Bandits rallied past Wisconsin and held on for a 9-6 win. Luca Tresh led the way for the River Bandits with two home runs.
Joe Gray Jr hit the first pitch of the game for a home run to give Wisconsin (52-46 overall, 16-17 second half) the lead. Gray has thirteen home runs on the season.
Zavier Warren continued his power surge with a two-out, solo home run in the first inning to put the Rattlers up 2-0. Warren has three homers in his last two games.
The bottom of the first started with an infield single and stolen base by Tyler Tolbert. Wisconsin starting pitcher Justin Jarvis struck out the next batter. Then, Diego Hernandez sent a sharp grounder to short, and Tolbert tried to advance. Antonio Piñero chose to throw to third but threw wildly and Tolbert scored on the play. River Town tied the game with a two-out, RBI single and Jarvis left the game after walking Cam Williams to load the bases to give him 36 pitches in the frame.
Joey Matulovich entered the game and got the final out of the first inning. He also retired the first two batters he faced in the bottom of the second. However, a walk and a single extended the inning to Tresh, who cracked a three-run home run for the Bandits (37-61, 11-22).
In the bottom of the third, Matulovich walked the lead-off batter and Warren missed a popup that would have been the second out. Tolbert followed with a three-run home run to right and the River Bandits were up 8-2.
Jackson Chourio started a Wisconsin rally with a double in the fifth inning. Darrien Miller drew a walk to set the stage for Warren, who ripped a double to the corner in right to score Chourio. Alex Hall singled home both Miller and Warren and the Rattlers were only down three.
Tresh added to the Quad Cities lead with a two-out, solo home run in the bottom of the fifth.
Warren started the Wisconsin seventh with a walk and Jose Acosta dropped a bunt single to put two runners on base. Piñero didn’t let the opportunity go to waste as he singled to right with two outs to score Warren and the Rattlers were within three runs again.
That was as close as the Timber Rattlers would get. The River Bandits bullpen set down Wisconsin in order in the eighth and pitched around a two-out walk in the ninth. The Timber Ratters are 17-4 in 21 games against Quad Cities this season. Thursday’s loss snapped a seven-game winning streak for the Rattlers over the Bandits.
Warren continued his torrid pace in the series. The Wisconsin third baseman was 2-for-4 with a walk, two RBI, and three runs scored on Thursday night. In the first three games of the series, Warren is 9-for-14 with three doubles, two triples, three homers, eight runs, and ten RBI.
Game four of the series is Friday night at Modern Woodmen Park. Carlos F. Rodriguez is the scheduled starting pitcher for the Timber Rattlers and will make his Midwest debut in the game. The River Bandits have named William Fleming (0-2, 6.38) as their starter. Game time is 6:30pm.