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Torres wins first, Toussaint powers Kernels to fifth in a row

July 7, 2005 - Midwest League (MWL) - Cedar Rapids Kernels News Release

July 7, 2005 - The Cedar Rapids Kernels used a three-run third inning to complete a series sweep of Ft. Wayne on Thursday afternoon. The Kernels took their fifth straight victory with a 4-2 afternoon matinee win over the Wizards in front of 3,293 people.

Joe Torres picked up his first win of the season and Drew Toussaint homered for the 12th time as the team equaled its longest winning streak of the season. The Kernels won five straight from May 19-23.

Torres, who has battled control problems while attempting a comeback from Tommy John surgery, turned in his best performance of the season. The former first round draft pick and top prospect in the Angels' system lasted five innings and scattered four hits and one run - an RBI double by Colt Morton in the third - while walking three and striking out four. The outing was his longest of the season, including his starts at Rancho Cucamonga before joining the Kernels.

The third inning provided all the runs Torres and his teammates would need as Sean Rodriguez started things with a lead off single to right. Richard Giannotti followed with a fly ball single to left before Freddy Sandoval was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Michael Collins then drew a walk to bring home a run before Toussaint cleared the bases with a booming double to left center. Giannotti and Sandoval scored but Matt Bush's relay throw pegged Collins at the plate.

Collins extended his team-best hitting streak to 12 games in the bottom of the first when he hit an infield single deep in the hole at second. He was 1-for-3 with his lone RBI coming on the walk in the third.

Toussaint belted his team-leading 12th blast in the seventh to extend the Kernels' lead and win a lucky fan a watch from Smulekoff's. His shot to left center bounced off the top of the tri-vision advertising signs and onto 8th Avenue.

Nick Green tossed three innings of one-run ball in relief of Torres before turning the game over to Chris Waters for the ninth. ‘Muddy' continued to confound hitters by recording his second straight 1-2-3 ninth while picking up his third save of the year.

As a team the Kernels knocked out 10 hits with Toussaint and Jordan Renz collecting two apiece. Toussaint's 2-for-4 day included three RBI and one run scored.

The Kernels now commute to Davenport for four games with the Swing of the Quad Cities. The Swing, who played later Thursday night, were 1Ž2 game in front of the Kernels for first place in the second half Western Division standings. A Quad City loss on Thursday would mean the two teams would open their series on Friday tied atop the standings. Karl Gelinas is scheduled to take the hill for the Kernels against the Swing's Tyler Adamczyk.

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