Geneva, IL– The Peoria Chiefs could not overcome early miscues in a 7-1 loss to the Kane County Cougars in game two of a three game series on Wednesday night. The first-place Chiefs are now 33-26 overall with the rubber game of the series set for 6:30 p.m. on Thursday night.
Two unearned runs got the Cougars out to an early lead in the top of the first on Chiefs starter Jesus Cruz. Yoel Yanqui dropped a single down the left field line with two outs followed by a Renae Martinez walk and Ernie De La Trinidad reached on a fielding error by Zach Kirtley to load the bases. Eduardo Diaz delivered a two-run single to left-center for a 2-0 advantage.
Kane County added a run in the bottom of the second inning. Gabriel Maciel lined a single to right field and stole second base. Jasrado Chisholm drove in Maciel on a looping single to right as the deficit widened to 3-0.
The Cougars pieced together another two-out rally to tack onto their lead against reliever Alvaro Seijas in the bottom of the third. With one down, De La Trinidad singled to right and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Diaz. Yan Sanchez scored De La Trindiad on a single as the lead grew to 4-0.
The Chiefs got on the board in the top of the fifth against Cougars starter Matt Peacock. Angel Moreno led off with a single and Bryce Denton reached on a fielder’s choice that retired Moreno at second. Jose Martinez singled to put runners at the corners and Scott Hurst punched a single to right to score Denton as the Chiefs trailed 4-1.
Kane County answered in the bottom of the sixth inning. Cintron led off with a single and Maciel was hit by a pitch to put two runners on. Chisholm singled home Cintron on a groundball to right center for a 5-1 advantage.
A couple more insurance runs came in for the Cougars in the bottom of the eighth against reliever Fabian Blanco. Maciel sent a leadoff single up the middle and Yanqui tripled him home on a fly ball to center. Renae Martinez drove in Yanqui on a single to put the Cougars ahead 7-1 going into the ninth inning.
Cruz (0-1) took the loss tossing two innings allowing one earned run on four hits, one walk and two strikeouts. Seijas pitched five innings letting up two runs on seven hits with two walks and four strikeouts. Blanco threw one inning allowing two runs on three hits with no walks and one strikeout.
Notes… The Chiefs have been outscored in the first inning 54-25…Cruz made his Chiefs debut and just his second career start in 21 outings… Seijas made his first appearance out of the bullpen this season…Last relief appearance for Seijas was on August 12, 2016 with the GCL Cardinals…The Chiefs are 15-19 when the opponent scores first… Kirtley has a eight-game hit streak… Hurst recorded his 12th multi-hit game and third three-hit game of the season… The Chiefs are 3-4 on Wednesday…. Blanco tied Dobzanski with a team-high 18 appearances…. Peoria is 5-20 when allowing five runs or more… The series finale is at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday… The Chiefs will start RH Paul Balestrieri (1-2, 6.92) while the Kane County starter is TBA…The broadcast can be heard, starting with the Pre-Game Show at 6:15 p.m. on www.peoriachiefs.com/listenlive and is also available on the Peoria Chiefs Network on the Tune-In Radio App.