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.
Today is Saturday, March 8, the 67th day of 2014. There are 298 days left in the year. 1864 -- 150 years ago: The price of board for single gentlemen occupying rooms in Davenport hotels has been raised to $10 per week. 1889 -- 125 years ago: Dr. J.W. Stewart was elected president of the Rock Island County Bible Society. 1914 -- 100 years ago: Mrs. I.O. Nothstein, Rock Island, was named president of the Woman's Home and Foreign Missionary Society of the Twin Cities. 1939 -- 75 years ago: Athel Young, wife of Chic Young, who draws the internationally famous "Blondie" comic strip, has been visiting her mother, Mrs. John Miller, in Rock Island for three weeks. The Youngs' infant son accompanied his mother. 1964 -- 50 years ago: 750 students from 30 northern Illinois high schools will take part in the Class D state finals music contest to be held next Saturday on the Augustana College campus. 1989 -- 25 years ago: A near capacity crowd shook the rafters at Wharton field House in Moline Tuesday night. When the decibel level returned to normal, Alleman's Pioneers had pulled out a 54-49 victory over the Orion Chargers. The win advanced Alleman into the Elite Eight for the first time in 25 years.