Bandits tag team pins down win


Share
Originally Posted Online: April 29, 2013, 7:56 pm
Last Updated: April 30, 2013, 12:11 am
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
By Steve Tappa, stappa@qconline.com

Batman and Robin. The Crusher and Dick the Bruiser. Peanut butter and jelly.

The Quad Cities River Bandits are hoping to add their current pitching staff to this list of all-time great tag teams.

With the Houston Astros organization utilizing a daily rotation of tandem starters, the hometown minor league baseball team has enjoyed its share of early-season success, and Brian Holmes and Jordan Jankowski paired up for the latest gem Monday in a 6-1 win over Great Lakes at Davenport's Modern Woodmen Park.

The duo teamed on a 14-strikeout, two-walk, four-hit performance and came within a strike of spinning the QC squad's second shutout in four days.

"Our pitchers set the tone," QC manager Omar Lopez said. "We didn't play good defense. We made three errors. But we made the plays when we had to make them. I don't like to see guys with their heads down. I want to see fighters. I need warriors."

QC's two hurlers certainly fit the bill during a rare morning start for 2,579 fans.

Holmes (2-2) fanned 10 in the first five innings, but allowed the Loons (11-12) an unearned run when Eric Smith made QC (14-8) pay for a miscue with a two-out double.

Jankowski (first save) also was dominating in QC's bounce back from a blown lead the day before against the Los Angeles Dodgers' Class A Midwest League affiliate.

"It was one of those rare days where I had everything going for me," Holmes said. "Then I had a 10-15 miles-per-hour wind blowing at my back, so I knew I could challenge them with the fastball, get ahead in counts and then mix in off-speed pitches.

"With three days rest and a pitch count, the tandem lets you get into a groove. It almost feels like you're always pitching. It's nice because you're always sharp."

The Bandits' bats again produced six runs, the same as during Sunday's 10-6 loss, but Lopez liked his team's improved approach to the game.

"Our meeting after the game (Sunday) worked,'' said Lopez, who harped on consistency. "We had the game (Sunday) in our hands, and we let it go because we made mental mistakes, because we didn't have a good approach. So that was my main goal (Monday)."

QC claimed the early lead when a catcher's error on a two-out strikeout led to a pair of unearned runs in the third inning. Jesse Wierzbicki had an RBI single in that frame.

The Bandits pushed the lead to 4-0 in the fourth on a two-run single by Terrell Joyce. Joe Sclafani (RBI single in the seventh) and Jobduan Morales (two-out RBI double in the eighth) added insurance runs to answer the Loons' lone score in the fifth.

However, QC's tag team really pinned down the win.

"We don't pitch to strike out people. We pitch to contact," Lopez said. "But everything was right there, with them chasing. We pounded the bottom of the zone and then changed their eye level."

Extra bases: Jesmuel Valentin is the 18-year-old son of 16-year big-league veteran and current Fort Wayne manager Jose Valentin. ... The Loons' shortstop, Corey Seager, also owns major league ties, with his brother Kyle the starting third baseman for Seattle.

















 



Local events heading








  Today is Wednesday, July 30, the 211th day of 2014. There are 154 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: After Sept. 1, every small box of matches will be required to have a 3 cent duty Lincoln stamp on it, and every large box will be one cent for every 100 matches.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Rock Island residents had contributed a total of $1,293 to the American Red Cross for the Johnstown flood relief fund.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Capt. Clark Means, new darkhorse twirler for the ARGUS staff, was in great form in his initial contest as a mound laborer. The result was that THE ARGUS trimmed the Union 6-5.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Hunter and Humprey Moody, young Decatur, Ill, brothers, lack only a few hours of establishing a new world light plane endurance record.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Gates of the 110th annual Mercer County Fair swing open tonight at Aledo for a full week of day and night activity. More that $36,000 will be paid in premiums and race purses.
1989 -- 25 years ago: The baseball field carved out of the cornfield near Dyersville, Iowa, continues to keep dreams alive for hundreds of visitors. Tourists from 26 state and France have visited Dan Lansing's farm to see the baseball diamond seen in the hit movie "Field of Dreams."






(More History)