DAVENPORT, IOWA (August 16, 2021) — Despite battling back from a six-run deficit and bringing the winning run to third in the bottom of the ninth, the Quad Cities River Bandits fell to the Beloit Snappers 8-6 in ten innings on Friday night at Modern Woodmen Park.
Both teams stranded a runner in the first inning before Nic Ready got the Snappers into the run column with a two-run blast off of Christian Cosby in the top of the second.
While M D Johnson worked around two Bandits’ walks in the third, his offense tacked on another tally in the fourth when Ready drove in his third RBI, this time on a sac-fly that plated Dustin Skelton who reached on a double.
Trailing 3-0, Quad Cities had no answer for Johnson as the righty went one-two-three in the bottom of the fourth and then stranded Gavin Stupienski’s walk and Rubendy Jaquez’s single, the first River Bandits hit of the game, with an inning-ending double-play in the fifth.
Beloit chased Cosby after back-to-back hits in the sixth and took a 4-0 lead-off of newly-entered Kasey Kalich, who gave up an RBI single to Dustin Skelton.
Johnson put a bow on his scoreless outing by working a clean sixth, including a pair of strike-outs to Michael Massey and Logan Porter to put himself in line for the win.
The seventh inning again saw Beloit on the board, this time on a Kameron Misner two-run missile that pegged Kalich for a pair, but the Bandits offense came to life after the stretch as Eddy Taveras took over on the hill for the Snappers.
After Eric Cole was hit by a pitch with one gone, Jake Means struck out to bring Taveras one out away from preserving the six-run lead, however, the righty surrendered an RBI double to Stupienski and then another run on Jaquez’s single.
With the two-out rally still in progress and Tavarez unable to get out of the inning, Tyler Mitzel came on for Mike Jacobs, but immediately gave up and RBI single for Tucker Bradley to cut the lead in half to 6-3. The River Bandits then inched a little closer when Mitzel plunked Porter with the bases loaded to make it a two-run game.
Patrick Smith made his Quad Cities début in the top of the eighth and worked a perfect three outs to send his offense quickly back to the plate, where Cole and Means walked and singled to start the frame. Stupienski put down a sacrifice bunt to move both into scoring-position and Jaquez delivered a two-run, game-tying knock for his third hit of the game.
Smith’s perfect eighth was matched by Peyton Gray in the ninth, who struck out the side in order, but despite Bradley leading off the bottom of the ninth with a single and advancing to third on a delayed steal of second and a wild pitch, Brady Puckett retired Massey and Porter and then struck out Jake Means after intentionally loading the bases to send the game to extras.
After having six-straight batters retired by the QC bullpen, Victor Victor Mesa immediately put his team on top in the tenth and launched a two-run bomb, thanks to the placed runner, off of Gray, who was removed from the game two pitches later.
Although Garrett Davila went one-two-three to send Quad Cities back to the plate, Puckett never allowed the tying run on base in the bottom of the tenth and got Maikel Garcia to groundout to end the game and the shortstop’s ten-game hitting-streak. Thanks to two innings of scoreless baseball in the ninth and tenth, Puckett (6-1) earned the win for Beloit, while Gray (2-1) took his first loss of the year despite allowing just one earned run over one inning of relief.
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.