Cubs Falter in the Ninth
A picturesque night at Four Winds Field couldn't produce a victory, as South Bend fell 5-2 to the Timber Rattlers in their second straight loss.
For the first time since September 2019, full capacity was allowed at Four Winds Field, and the fans delivered with a sellout crowd of 5,061. Opening Day 2.0 was buoyed by an outstanding pitching performance by Max Bain, who struck out eight batters through his first five innings of work, setting a new career high with ten in his seventh career start. He allowed the first, and his only, run of the game in the fifth inning.
After retiring the first two batters of the fifth, the next three would reach base, and Chad McClanahan opened up the scoring with a two-out double to make it 1-0 Wisconsin.
South Bend quickly responded in the bottom half of the frame, after Yonathan Perlaza scored on a double play ball from Jake Slaughter to tie the game up at one.
A scoreless sixth set up the bottom of the seventh for the Cubs, who took a 2-1 lead when Perlaza and Washer traded one-out doubles.
Unfortunately, those were the last two hits of the game for South Bend.
The lead remained at one run heading into the ninth, and Eduarniel Nunez stepped to the mound for his second relief appearance of the season. The first batter he faced was Gabriel Garcia, who led off with a five-pitch walk. A pair of wild pitches and a balk tied the game up.
From there, it unraveled. Two errors, two more walks and wild pitches in conjunction with a Je'Von Ward RBI single combined for a four-run ninth inning that gave Wisconsin an insurmountable lead. Nelson Velazquez was the only baserunner in South Bend's last licks, but South Bend couldn't muster a comeback and fell 5-2.
Perlaza and Washer each went 2-4, with two doubles from Perlaza and an RBI for the Cubs backstop Washer. Nunez earned his first loss of the season, allowing 2 earned runs in two thirds of the ninth inning. Max Bain was the star for South Bend, turning in a strong 5 and a third innings with ten strikeouts and one run allowed.
Next up: Derek Casey (2-3, 4.30 ERA) vs Reece Olson (3-2, 3.30 ERA)
First pitch tomorrow is at 7:05 pm EDT, and nine lucky fans will win a Flat Screen TV! If you are 18 and older you can enter the raffle to win at tomorrow's game. Purchase tickets at the box office or by visiting southbendcubs.com.
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