KERNELS 6, BANDITS 2
DAVENPORT — It was a rare occasion, but Quad Cities’ first call to the bullpen went unanswered Monday night.
Cedar Rapids tagged Felipe Tejada for four runs on four hits and took advantage of three walks in the top of the fifth inning, pulling away to a 6-2 Midwest League victory over the River Bandits at Modern Woodmen Park.
The loss was the first in seven decisions this season for the right-hander, who has relieved in all but seven of his 18 appearances for Quad Cities.
Tejada entered a 2-2 game after Jonathan Bermudez scattered four hits over four innings and with a crowd of 3,492 looking on, the Kernels sent nine batters to the plate against the Quad Cities right hander and eight straight reached base.
It was the second of the walks given up by Tejada which pushed Cedar Rapids ahead to stay.
DaShawn Keirsey’s free pass scored rehabbing Minnesota Twins outfielder LaMonte Wade Jr., who had followed a Spencer Steer double by beating out an infield single.
Wade, who struck out twice against Bandits starter Jonathan Bermudez, finished 1-for-4 at the plate with a single and a walk in his third rehab appearance for the Kernels.
In the deciding fifth, Steer was forced out at the plate before Keirsey drew the two-out walk which let Wade score the go-ahead run.
That was followed by a two-run single up the middle by Tyler Webb — the third of his four singles — and a run-scoring double by Trevor Casanova which hugged the line in right.
The Cedar Rapids surge came after teams traded two runs apiece in the second inning.
The first of two Casanova doubles and a sacrifice fly to center by Kyle Schmidt gave the Kernels a short-lived 2-0 advantage.
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The River Bandits answered in the bottom half of the inning, stringing together four straight one-out singles and scoring their two runs on a sharply-hit single to right by Trey Dawson.
Beyond the four straight hits in the second, Kernels starter Josh Winder allowed just one other base hit during his six shutout innings of work.
Dawson collected that one as well, opening the Quad Cities fifth with a single to left center and stealing second to end a string of eight straight River Bandits retired by Winder.
By that point, Cedar Rapids had opened a four-run lead Quad Cities proved unable to dent.
Winder matched a career high with nine strikeouts and did not walk a batter moving to 7-2 on the season.
Roster move: Pitcher Joey Gonzalez rejoined the River Bandits from high-A Fayetteville on Monday.
Coming off of the seven-day injured list, the right-hander went 3-1 with a 2.25 ERA in 12 relief appearances for Quad Cities between May 12-July 3. In 13 outings out of the pen in the Carolina League on both sides of his River Bandits work, Gonzalez with 1-1 with a 5.11 ERA at the high-A level.
To accommodate him on the Quad Cities roster, outfielder James Nix was reassigned to short-season Tri-City. Nix was 0-for-10 at the plate in the three games he played in since arriving from the Gulf Coast League on Aug. 12.
For a cause: The River Bandits wore special jerseys on Monday as part of Disabilities Awareness Night at Modern Woodmen Park.
The jerseys were auctioned off following the game to benefit Scott County Special Olympics programs, whose participants were recognized during a pregame parade around the field at Modern Woodmen Park.
On deck: Cedar Rapids at Quad Cities, 6:35 p.m., today. Probable pitchers: Cedar Rapids, Kody Funderburk (0-2, 4.37 ERA); QC, Matt Ruppenthal (4-6, 4.50)