Stubbs Homers Twice as Bandits Win Wild One in Peoria
Peoria, IL - The Quad Cities River Bandits emerged from a wild game with a 9-7 victory over the Peoria Chiefs in the final meeting of the season between the two teams on Friday night. Catcher C.J. Stubbs became the first River Bandits player to hit multiple home runs in a game by going 4-4 with two long balls and four runs batted in.
The River Bandits (33-27, 76-50) managed to build a 6-0 lead over the first four innings of the game. Alex McKenna tripled down the right field line with two outs in the first inning and Grae Kessinger's ensuing infield single drove him in to help the Bandits move in front 1-0. Stubbs hit his first long ball of the night in the third inning to double that lead to 2-0. In the fourth, Zach Biermann drove in both Austin Dennis and Trey Dawson who had singled in front of him to double the lead once more. Before the inning was over, Stubbs blasted his second home run of the evening and the lead grew to 6-0. The last time a player had hit multiple home runs in a game was August 1, 2018 when Miguelangel Sierra hit a pair against Clinton.
Peoria (19-41, 49-80) bounced back by scoring four runs in the bottom of the fifth against starting pitcher Jose Bravo of Quad Cities. The inning began with Bravo striking out Wadye Ynfante, but a wild pitch allowed the hitter to make it all the way to second base. Josh Shaw followed with a double to put the Chiefs on the board. With two outs in the frame, Brady Whalen singled home a run to close the gap to 6-2 and then Imeldo Diaz split the gap with a two-run double that finished off the big inning.
The River Bandits pushed the lead back to three with an RBI single by Stubbs in the sixth, only to watch Peoria close the gap by a run in the seventh on Whalen's run-scoring double. In the top of the eighth, both Alex Holderbach and Wilyer Abreu took bases loaded walks to force in two runs and extend the lead to 9-5. In the bottom of the same inning, the Chiefs received an RBI double from off the bat of Edwin Figuera and scored another run on Jonatan Machado's single into left field to make it 9-7.
With runners on the corners, reliever Brett Daniels was removed in favor of Layne Henderson. Henderson issued a walk to Whalen that loaded the bases, but won a 10-pitch battle to strike out Diaz and end the inning. He would come back and retire the side in order in the bottom of the ninth to earn his first save of the season.
Stubbs led the Bandits 13-hit attack, while Grae Kessinger put together a 3-5 night at the plate. McKenna and Dawson added two hits each. For Peoria, the top four hitters in the lineup all collected two hits. Whalen and Diaz drove in two each.
Daniels earned the win for the River Bandits by working 3.0 innings out of the bullpen. He allowed three runs on five hits. Chiefs starting pitcher Parker Kelly took the loss when the Bandits got to him for seven runs on nine hits over 5.1 innings on the hill.
The River Bandits return to Modern Woodmen Park to open a four-game series against the Kane County Cougars on Saturday. First pitch is set for 6:35 p.m. on Super Hero Night featuring a Captain America bobblehead giveaway presented by RIA Federal Credit Union. LHP Jonathan Bermudez (4-1, 4.26) gets the nod for the River Bandits in a meeting with RHP Levi Kelly (5-1, 2.12) of Kane County.
All River Bandits games are broadcast on 1170 K-BOB and TuneIn Radio. Home games are also available with video on MiLB.TV.
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