Manny Ramirez singled home Chris Valaika in the eighth and the offense blasted three home runs as the Iowa Cubs (48-41) took a much needed 5-4 victory over the Oklahoma City RedHawks (47-44) on Sunday at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. The win snapped a three-game losing streak for Iowa.
Ramirez singled up the middle to put Iowa back on top after the RedHawks tied the game at 4-4 by scoring two runs in the bottom of the seventh. Iowa received some help in the inning. After Chris Valaika led off with a single, he advanced to second on a wild pitch by RedHawks pitcher Alex White (1-2). The extra base allowed Valaika to score on the single by Ramirez.
Armando Rivero pitched two scoreless innings for Iowa, picking up the victory. Rivero moved to 3-0 on the season with Iowa in only six appearances. Zac Rosscup picked up his second save. With runners on first and second in the ninth, Rosscup struck out RedHawks right fielder Austin Wates to end the game.
The RedHawks scored first when Preston Tucker singled home Robbie Grossman in the first off Iowa starter Kyle Hendricks. Hendricks was removed after two innings, fueling speculation that he is headed to the Chicago Cubs who are in need of starters after trading Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to the Oakland Athletics on Friday. No official announcement has been made regarding Hendricks.
Iowa took the lead in the second. After Valaika led off with a double, Kris Bryant mashed the first pitch he saw from RedHawks starter Rudy Owens out of Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark giving Iowa 2-1 lead. Bryant now has 8 HR and 22 RBI in 19 games with Iowa.
The Cubs took a 3-1 lead in the sixth when Javier Baez homered to right. The home run by Baez gave him a team-leading 13 on the season. Baez also leads the team in RBI with 50.
Leading off the seventh, Ryan Kalish got into the act. Kalish cracked his third home run of the season since joining the team from Chicago and gave Iowa a 4-2 lead.
Arismendy Alcantara, Valaika, Ramirez, and Kalsih had two hits each for Iowa.
Iowa opens up a four-game series with the Omaha Storm Chasers on Monday night at Werner Park.