Brooks Raley gave the Iowa Cubs (59-72) its fifth straight quality start and the offense put up three runs in the ninth inning as Iowa shutout the New Orleans Zephyrs 3-0 on Tuesday night at Zephyr Field. With the victory, Iowa was able to avoid being swept in the five game series.
Raley (8-9) was outstanding on Tuesday allowing only one runner as far as second base over eight innings. Raley scattered three hits and didn't walk a batter while striking out six Zephyrs (65-66).
Despite the brilliance of Raley, the Iowa offense couldn't get anything going against Zephyrs starter Sam Dyson. Dyson allowed only two hits and one walk over seven innings.
Iowa was finally able to push across three runs in the ninth inning, helped by the Zephyrs defense. Julio Borbon led off the inning for Iowa with a walk. Edwin Maysonet followed with a sacrifice bunt. The speed of Borbon, coupled with a throwing error by New Orleans catcher Rob Brantley, allowed Borbon to score all the way from first, giving Iowa a 1-0 lead.
Two batters later, Brad Nelson took a 2-1 pitch over the right field wall for a two-run home run, his 19th of the year, extending the Iowa lead to 3-0.
Brian Schlitter remained perfect for Iowa on the season, picking up his 18th save in 18 opportunities with a scoreless ninth.
Iowa opens a huge nine game homestand on Wednesday at Principal Park. With games on the schedule dwindling down, Iowa plays five against the Memphis Redbirds followed by four against the Omaha Storm Chasers. Iowa currently stands in third place in its division, six games behind Omaha and three games behind second place Memphis.