SOUTH BEND, INDIANA (August 23, 2021) — After being held to just three hits the previous night, the Quad Cities River Bandits picked up seven runs on nine hits on Sunday and, behind Michael Massey and Anthony Veneziano, claimed their eleventh series win of the season, as they topped the South Bend Cubs 7-1 at Four Winds Field.
In his second start of the series, Veneziano got an early lead to work with thanks to a solo blast by Massey, who took Cubs’ starter Max Bain deep on the first pitch of the second inning for a 1-0 advantage.
The Cubs’ offense would remain quiet with Veneziano on the hill, despite the aid of Nico Hoerner, who had his rehab appearance cut short after leaving the ballgame during his second at-bat in the third inning, a frame which Veneziano retired the Cubs in order with two of his game’s five strike-outs.
While Bain matched the Bandits’ lefty in the third and fourth, the South Bend righty plunked John Rave to begin the fifth and would eventually see him score on a Jake Means RBI double after Rave stole second during his plate appearance.
In his fifth and final inning, Veneziano surrendered a lead-off double to Yonathan Perlaza, but the outfielder was thrown out on the relay trying to stretch it into a triple. He’d then retire Jake Washer and Bradlee Beesley to face the minimum before handing the ball off to Nathan Means in line for the win.
Before the Bandits’ bullpen took over in the sixth, their offense snagged a trio of runs off of the newly-entered Jose Albertos, who gave up four hits over his first eight pitches, including Massey’s second home-run of the game, a three-run blast that scored Tucker Bradley and Nick Loftin to extend the QC lead to 5-0.
With Webb now on the hill for the River Bandits, the Cubs struck for their first run of the game with two outs on Tyler Durna’s solo homer to make it 5-1, but Webb got Alexander Canario to ground out to prevent a rally.
Quad Cities got two more insurance runs in the seventh and eighth on a sac-fly from Loftin and then the second RBI of the game for Means, who plated Eaton’s two-out single off of Tyler Santana, with a single to right-field.
Bandits’ reliever Kasey Kalich stranded a couple of hits in his two full innings of scoreless work before Patrick Smith wrapped up the series with a clean ninth and struck out Jake Slaughter to secure the 7-1 River Bandits’ win.
Veneziano (5-4) capped off his eighth start of five or more innings with a zero in the run column en route to the win, while Bain (3-8) saw his effort tagged with the loss despite giving up just two runs and striking out eight over five innings of his own.
The River Bandits will head back to Davenport for their next series and will host the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers on Tuesday, with the resumption of a suspended game beginning at 4:00 pm CDT at Modern Woodmen Park and then a seven-inning contest commencing approximately 30 minutes after the game’s conclusion.
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.