Returning from the disabled list on Monday night, Quad Cities River Bandits' second baseman Luis Mateo made his presence felt in a big way.|
After the Bandits fell behind by five runs early and faced a three-run, seventh-inning deficit before rallying to tie the score, Mateo completed the comeback with a two-out, three-run triple in the last of the eighth inning as Quad Cities salvaged its series finale with Clinton with a wild 10-7 victory at Modern Woodmen Park.
"That was a good win by the kids. They never gave up, and came back swinging,'' said Quad Cities manager Luis Aguayo. "Once we start to get people back, things are going to change. It's just a matter of keeping everyone healthy from now on.''
Besides Mateo's 2-for-5, three-RBI effort at the plate, Aguayo was also happy to have Mateo's defensive skills back out in the infield to help the Bandits stay tied atop the Western Division with Burlington.
"He's having a good year,'' said Aguayo, "and we don't have to worry about him out there on defense. He's consistently reliable.''
The LumberKings made that opening frame a painful one for Bandits' starting pitcher Tyrell Jenkins. Scoring their first run before the first out, the LumberKings touched up Jenkins for five runs on six hits in their first at-bat.
It started off on an auspicious note for the Bandits when Dillon Hazlett beat out an infield chopper. Two batters later, Ji-Man Choi singled in Hazlett to put Clinton up 1-0. Dan Paolini (3-for-5, four RBIs) then belted a one-out offering onto the left-field berm to make it a 4-0 game. Jabari Blash doubled after Paolini's homer and scored on Guillermo Pimentel's RBI single to cap the inning.
"Jenkins was off, and every mistake he made, he paid for it,'' said Aguayo. "Clinton is a good fastball hitting team, so you've got to keep the ball down and change speeds around on them. But if you can hold them in the park, you've got a chance.''
The QC comeback began in the last of the third on an RBI double by Brett Wiley, his first hit as a River Bandit. The hosts kept chipping away with a fifth-inning RBI single by Roberto Reyes and a two-run single in the bottom of the sixth by Roberto DeLaCruz that made it a 5-4 game.
"That was good to see,'' Aguayo said of Wiley, who went 3-for-5 out of the leadoff spot. "A kid like that, coming in here from the (Gulf Coast League) and helping us out like that.''
After spotting Clinton a pair of seventh-inning runs, Quad Cities finally caught up in the last of the seventh, tying the game at 7-7 on a one-out, two-run double by Anthony Garcia.
The River Bandit bullpen also played a key role, with three relievers combining to allow two runs on three hits. Heath Wyatt (4-2) worked the final two innings to earn the victory.
- Extra bases: A pair of ex-Bandits participated in Sunday's All-Star Futures Game in Kansas City. Oscar Taveras was 1-for-3 with a sacrifice fly as a member of the World team, which lost 17-5 to the USA squad that included Kolten Wong, who went 0-for-2 with a run..... The Bandits are off today before hitting the road for a six-game swing beginning Wednesday evening at Lansing.
Milan, IL Details
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