Quad Cities River Bandits' trip to Lansing, Michigan comprised of close games, but more losses than wins. The River Bandits dropped the first two games on Tuesday and Wednesday, but ended the series with a win on Thursday night against the Lansing Lugnuts.
Tuesday night's game saw the River Bandits jump out to an early lead of 2-0 after five innings before the Lugnuts poured in four runs in the bottom of the sixth. James Ramsey made the game interesting from the start with a lead-off single in the first and two stolen bases to land him on third base. With Jack Mayfield's double, Ramsey was the first to cross the plate.
Mayfield would cross the plate in the third inning with a combination of a walk, two wild pitches, which brought him to third, and a score on a balk by Lugnuts' pitcher Alonzo Gonzalez. Mayfield would score, again, in the eighth, along with Chan Moon, but it wasn't enough for the win, as the River Bandits dropped the first of three games in this road trip.
The second game saw the River Bandits score first again, but the Lugnuts would score more. Mayfield also scored in this game along with Conrad Gregor when Tyler White doubled them home for the River Bandits' first two runs. White did it again with another double, which scored Mayfield again, but with Brett Phillips this time.
River Bandits' starter Jandel Gustave (1-1, 7.94 ERA) had quite a different game than his first one, in which he didn't give up any runs against Kane County on April 5. This time, Gustave surrendered five runs of the six runs that the Lugnuts slugged in for a 4-6 River Bandit loss.
Thursday's series finale ended on a good note for the River Bandits. Phillips was hot by reaching base four times on three hits and a walk. With the game tied 1-1 after six innings, the River Bandits went to work. Jobduan Morales started off the inning with a walk, advanced to second base on a Moon sacrifice bunt, and reached third on Ramsay's ground out. Phillips joined Morales on the bases with a walk of his own, and after a Lugnut fielding error on White's fly ball, both Phillips and Morales would score. White landed on second base after the error and scored on Gregor's single.
Evan Grills' first start as a River Bandit was very productive, even though he didn't get the decision. Grills worked five innings while giving up five hits and only one run, while striking out five. Michael Feliz (1-0, 7.20) would take the decision, although he surrendered two more runs, but Patrick Christensen and Andrew Walter would shut down the Lugnuts for the final two innings. Christensen was credited for the hold, while Walter picked up his first save of the season.
Tonight, the River Bandits have already extended their streak with a road win against Great Lakes Loons, 6-4. They have two more in this road series on Saturday, April 12, at 5:05 p.m. and Sunday, April 13, at 2:05 p.m. The River Bandits looked to rise above .500 with a win Saturday and Sunday. Go River Bandits!