DAVENPORT, IOWA (September 10, 2021) — For the first time in 2021, the Quad Cities River Bandits played eleven innings at Modern Woodmen Park, but ended up losing their second game of the week to the Peoria Chiefs by a final score of 8-5 on Thursday night.
The Chiefs were the first to score in the contest and did so on back-to-back doubles from Jordan Walker and Pedro Pages, as the latter drove in the former against Charlie Neuweiler for a 1-0 Chiefs’ lead.
However, the Bandits’ starter took control of the game for the next three innings and struck out a combined five batters over his next three scoreless frames.
Quad Cities also produced offensively from the second to the fourth inning and tied the game against Wilfredo Pereira on an RBI single off the bat of Paker Bates in the second. In the third, it was an RBI single from John Rave, his second hit of the game, that gave the Bandits’ their first lead, before Gavin Stupienski launched a solo home for his second dinger in as many games, and a 3-1 QC advantage.
Both starters completed five innings, with Neuweiler striking out the side and tying his season-high eight strike-outs in the scoreless top-half, while Pereira retired the heart of the Bandits’ lineup in order to complete the game’s first scoreless inning.
In the sixth, Ruben Ramirez picked up right where Neuweiler left off and struck out the side in order on just ten pitches, prior to Diego Cordero picking off Kale Emshoff and inducing 6-3 inning-ending double-play to face the minimum in the bottom-half.
The River Bandits extended their lead to four on a sacrifice-fly from Michael Massey in the bottom of the seventh, but Peoria jump-started the offense in the eighth and got a two-run bomb from Thomas Francisco, his first High-A home run, which chased Ramirez from the ballgame with his team’s lead cut to 4-3.
After entering to record the final two outs in the bottom of the eighth, Webb pitched the top of the ninth for Quad Cities, and after Francisco Hernandez ended his hitless, three-strikeout night with an infield knock to lead off the inning, Matt Chamberlain used a sac-bunt to move the tying run into scoring-position.
Before delivering a pitch to Jordan Walker, Webb was called for a balk, which moved Hernandez to third and allowed Walker to tie the game at 4-4 on an RBI ground-out.
Quad Cities got a lead-off single from Parker Bates in the bottom of the ninth, but Nick Trogrlic-Iverson, who pitched a scoreless bottom of the eighth, stranded the man and sent the game into extras.
Thanks to the placed runner and a pair of Webb walks, the Chiefs loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the 10th, but the righty struck out Chamberlain to keep the game tied. However, Quad Cities — who also loaded the bases with two outs — failed to score in the bottom-half, as Trogrlic-Iverson got Stupienski to pop out to Hernandez to move the game to the eleventh.
Having received just one inning from his starter, Anderson Paulino, in the previous night’s contest, Bandits’ manager Chris Widger opted to put Stupienski on the mound for the top of the eleventh as opposed to using a third bullpen arm.
Peoria feasted on the River Bandits’ first-baseman and took the lead on Lott’s two-run double. Aaron Antonino then made it a three-run game with a sac-fly, before Tyler Reichenborn moved the Peoria advantage to 8-4 with a run-scoring single.
After Hernandez was hit by a pitch with two outs in the top of the eleventh, Quad Cities’ bench coach Mike Jirshele was ejected from the game by base umpire Mitch Trzeciak, marking the second time this season a member of the Bandits’ coaching staff has been ejected from a game.
Nick Loftin got the home-team their final run via his fourth hit of the game, an RBI double off of Sean Kealey in the bottom of the eleventh, and although Jake Means came to the plate with the bases loaded and representing the winning run, the lefty got Means to chase a high fast-ball to end the game.
Having been the game’s only pitcher to work a scoreless outing, Trogrlic-Iverson (6-5) got the win for Peoria with three innings and two strike-outs. Stupienski (0-1), got the loss in his second-career outing on the hill.
The River Bandits will look to even the series tomorrow night, as they'll give the ball to Emilio Marquez (0-0, 12.79), who starts opposite Peoria’s Colin Schmid (0-1, 2.70). First pitch is scheduled for 6:30PM CDT at Modern Woodmen Park.
ABOUT THE BANDITS: The 2021 season marks the River Bandits’ first year as a new Advanced-A Major League affiliate. As such, the team will be offering higher-quality baseball than has ever before been played in the Quad Cities. Additionally, the Bandits will welcome a new MLB affiliate to the Quad Cities, the Kansas City Royals. The River Bandits anchor the Quad Cities’ sports-market, which The Sports Business Journal named the top minor-league sports-market in the country in 2015 and second-best minor-league market in its 2017 follow-up ranking. In 2015, 2017, and again in 2019, the River Bandits earned Ballpark Digest’s award for “Best Charitable Works” in Minor League Baseball, the only club to win that coveted award three times. For more information, visit www.riverbandits.com or contact General Manager Joe Kubly at (563) 333-2768.