After posting one run in each of the last two games, Iowa’s offense exploded for 12 runs on 14 hits as the Iowa Cubs (16-13) avoided a four-game sweep defeating the Nashville Sounds 12-3 on Monday afternoon at Greer Stadium in Nashville. Dallas Beeler picked up the victory in his first triple-A start. With the victory, Iowa moved to 10-3 in day games this season.
Iowa posted its biggest offensive inning of the season in the ninth, scoring seven runs on seven hits, including six straight hits to lead off the inning. Brett Jackson led off, hitting an opposite-field home run, his second, on an 0-2 pitch from Sounds pitcher Kyle Heckathorn. Luis Flores doubled and Logan Watkins singled putting runners on second and third. Jonathan Mota followed with an RBI single scoring Flores. Arismendy Alcantara joined the hit-parade with an RBI double to right and Lars Anderson followed with a two-run single to center. Three batters later, Christian Villanueva doubled to left scoring Anderson and Brett Jackson picked up an RBI with a groundout in his second at-bat of the inning.
Beeler, the 24th ranked prospect in the Chicago Cubs organization according to Baseball America, joined Iowa from extended spring training on Monday and fared quite well in his first triple-A start. Beeler (1-0) gave up one run over six innings, allowing six hits and no walks while striking out three. Blake Parker pitched the final 1.1 innings to pick up his fifth save for Iowa.
Coming into the game, it figured to be another difficult day for the Iowa offense. Mike Fiers came into the game with a 5-0 record and an ERA of 0.80. However, Iowa wasted no time in getting on the scoreboard with three runs in the first off the Sounds (18-13) starter. After an Alcantara single and a walk to Anderson, Chris Valaika drove a 1-0 pitch over the left field wall for his third home run of the season, staking Iowa to a 3-0 lead.
Iowa put up two more runs in the third off Fiers (5-1). Valiaka doubled and scored one batter later when Josh Vitters hit his fourth home run of the season, and second in two days, giving Iowa a 5-0 lead.
Valaika went 2-for-5 with a double, home run, and 3 RBI, Jackson was 2-for-5 with a home run and 2 RBI. Alcantara, Villanueva, and Flores each added two hits each.
Iowa opens up a four-game series against the New Orleans Zephyrs, triple-A affiliate of the Miami Marlins, on Tuesday night in New Orleans.
NOTES: With Dallas Beeler added to the roster, Edgar Gonzalez was placed on the disabled list.