SAUGET, IL–The River City Rascals defeated the rival Gateway Grizzlies 8-2 on Friday night at GCS Ballpark, beginning the second half of the Frontier League season in the same fashion they ended the first half. They have now won four straight overall. Every Rascal in the lineup reached base at least once in the win.
Kevin Suarez singled in two in the top of the second to kick off the scoring, but the Grizzlies responded with an RBI groundout from Brennan Morgan in the bottom of the frame, making it 2-1. The Rascals then rallied for three in the top of the third, on a solo home run from Paul Kronenfeld and consecutive RBI singles from JD Hearn and Suarez to take a 5-1 lead.
The Grizzlies countered with a solo blast from John Price Jr. in the bottom of the third, but the Rascals responded with three unanswered runs to run away with the victory. Hearn brought in two on a homer in the fifth and Mike Jurgella drew a walk with the bases loaded in the seventh.
Hearn and Ransom LaLonde each finished the night with three hits, with Hearn also drawing two walks. Rascals hitters combined to draw nine walks on the night.
Josh Kimborowicz (3-2) was fantastic, allowing just four hits and one earned run, while striking out seven and walking none. Chris Chegas, in his team debut, and Chad Gendron combined for two scoreless innings to close out the victory.
Grizzlies starter Mike Elwood (4-5) allowed 12 hits and seven earned runs in 4.1 innings, walking three and striking out five.
The Rascals (30-22) look to take the commanding 2-0 series lead over the Grizzlies (22-32) tomorrow night, with first pitch scheduled for 7:05 pm CT. Hector Hernandez will make the start on the mound for the Rascals.