Game one of the Midwest League Western Division championship on Saturday featured the Quad Cities River Bandits (81-56) and Kane County Cougars (65-74). The River Bandits won the second half division title and swept the Clinton Lumber Kings to reach the semifinals while the Cougars clinched a playoff spot and took two of three games from first half division winner the Burlington Bees.
Quad Cities sent their strikeout
master Trevor Rosenthal to the hill
Both pitchers got 1-2-3 innings in
the first but in the second, Perez gave in first. Jonathan Rodriguez singled and moved to
third on a Cody Stanley single. Nick Longmire hit into a double play,
After two outs, the River Bandits' Kolten Wong legged out a bunt and struggling Ronny Gil hit an RBI double into left field. Oscar Taveras singled to left to push Gil across the plate but in an attempt to extend the hit, he was thrown out at second. Quad Cities went up 3-0 in the third.
Rodriguez led off the fifth with a home run to center field off Perez but the following three batters went down in order, giving the River Bandits a 4-0 lead and Rosenthal some padding as he tossed hitless innings in the fourth and fifth.
Santiago Garrido took over for Perez in the fifth and pitched two hitless frames to keep the Cougars within reach of the River Bandits. Rosenthal cruised right along, getting another shutout inning in the sixth.
After two innings of no base
runners, the River Bandits finally got to Garrido.
Former St. Louis Cardinals international target Cheslor Cuthbert collected his second hit of the game in the seventh. He was the only Cougar to get two hits and only to reach base in the seventh.
The River Bandits made it a pretty quick and easy inning in the eighth as Gil singled to center and was thrown out at second after Taveras struck out swinging. Rodriguez followed in the same way as Taveras for the third out. Rosenthal got the Cougars' three batters to fly out to Taveras in the bottom half of the eighth as Quad Cities held onto the 6-0 lead.
Rosenthal finished the game getting the final three Cougar batters to ground out to Bergman and Rodriguez.
Ronny Gil 2-for-4 with one double, one two-out RBI, one run, and one caught stealing.
Oscar Taveras 1-for-4 with one two-out RBI and one strikeout.
Jonathan Rodriguez 2-for-4 with one home run, one RBI, two runs, one strikeout, and assisted in one double play.
Cody Stanley 2-for-4 with one double, one run, and one strikeout.
Nick Longmire 1-for-4 with one triple, one run, one strikeout, and grounded into one double play.
Geoff Klein 0-for-4 with one RBI and one strikeout.
Joey Bergman 1-for-4 with one two-out RBI, one strikeout, and assisted in one double play.
Trevor Rosenthal started and pitched nine innings. He allowed four hits, no runs, and struck three out for the winning decision (1-0). (g/f:14-7)
Game Two Sunday
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