Kernels get come from behind victory - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Kernels get come from behind victory

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CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA – Late offense and perfect relief pitching pushed the Cedar Rapids Kernels to a 6-5 comeback victory Tuesday against the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers at Perfect Game Field at Veterans Memorial Stadium. Robby Rinn provided the go-ahead double within his Kernels debut, and Melvi Acosta (1-1) earned the win after pitching 3.1 perfect innings out of the bullpen.

Rinn broke a 5-5 tie in the eighth inning with his first Midwest League hit. Jean Carlos Arias led off with a single and stole second base before advancing to third on a groundout from Ben Rortvedt. Rinn lifted a double to the left-field warning track that brought Arias home to give the Kernels (24-25) their 6-5 winning margin.

Acosta shut down Wisconsin (23-29) in a flawless performance to secure the victory. He stranded an inherited runner in the sixth and retired all 10 batters that he faced featuring a streak of six consecutive groundouts over the eighth and ninth innings.

The Timber Rattlers opened the scoring Tuesday by jumping out to a 3-0 lead within the third. Nick Roscetti’s RBI single drove in Gilbert Lara for the first run, and Demi Orimoloye hit a two-run triple later in the frame.

Alex Kirilloff closed the gap to 3-2 in the bottom of the third inning. Three straight singles loaded the bases for Kirilloff, who delivered a two-run double that plated Jordan Gore and Jacob Pearson. That was the final hit that Alec Bettinger allowed in a quality start as he retired the next 12 batters in a row to get through the end of the sixth.

Wisconsin scored in the fourth and fifth innings to stretch its lead to 5-2. Trever Morrison brought in KJ Harrison with an RBI single during the fourth. Orimoloye added a solo home run within the top of the fifth.

The Kernels started their comeback in the seventh and tied the game at 5-5. Royce Lewis recorded a two-out, two-run double that allowed Rinn and Gore to come home. Kirilloff followed with a game-tying single. Gabe Friese (1-3) gave up all three runs in the inning and was also tagged for Rinn’s decisive double in the eighth in a losing decision.

This three-game series continues Wednesday at 12:05 p.m. with Kernels right-hander Blayne Enlow (0-1, 3.28) scheduled to face Timber Rattlers right-hander Bowden Francis (1-2, 4.93). Fans unable to attend Wednesday’s game can follow the action with Morgan Hawk online at, and MiLB.TV.

The Kernels offer a Noon Game Combo Special consisting of a regular sandwich, a choice of chips or popcorn, and a 16 oz. regular draft beer or 20 oz. bottled soda or water for just $8.50. Cedar Rapids and Wisconsin are expected to wear special jerseys representing Gryffindor and Slytherin, respectively. These jerseys, sponsored by Alliant Energy, will be worn by the Kernels and Timber Rattlers again on Harry Potter Night next month and will also be auctioned off during that contest June 22.

Fans can purchase tickets for all Cedar Rapids home games by visiting, going to the Kernels Ticket Office, or calling (319) 896-7560. The Kernels Ticket Office is open Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. On Sundays when the Kernels have a home game, the Kernels Ticket Office will open at 11:00 a.m.

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