The Iowa Cubs taxidermied the Memphis Redbirds, 4-3 in their home opener.
Starter J. R. Mathes gave up three home runs in the six innings he pitched. But he didn't walk anyone and all three of the home runs were solo shots. Mathes surrendered five hits and he struck out six.
Justin Berg collected the win when the I-Cubs came back with three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning. Berg threw one scoreless inning, giving up one hit and one walk.
Esmailin Caridad had to come in with two on and two out in the ninth when John Gaub got into trouble. Caridad got a fly out to retire the only batter he faced and pick up his first save of the year.
First baseman Bryan LaHair was 3 for 4 with a double. He scored one run.
In the first game, starter Alberto Cabrera got the win. Cabrera went six innings and allowed three runs (two earned) on seven hits. He walked one and struck out three.
Luke Sommer had to enter the game in the seventh inning after Kyle Smit got into trouble in the inning and gave up three runs and left with the bases still loaded. Sommer got a ground out, which scored one run, and a fly out to end the game and get his first save of the season.
Shortstop Ryan Flaherty hit two home runs in the first game, a solo shot in the second inning and a three-run home run in the fourth. Flaherty now has three home runs this season. He was 3 for 5 with five RBI in the first game. He was 1 for 3 in game two to go 4 for 8 on the day.
Third baseman Josh Vitters hit his second home run this season, a three-run home run in the first inning. Vitters was 1 for 3 in the first game and 1 for 2 with an RBI and a HBP in game two.
Finally, James Adduci hit his second home run of the year with a man on in the second inning. Adduci was 3 for 3 with a stolen base. He scored three times and had the two RBI. Adduci did not play game two.
First baseman Rebel Riding went 2 for 3 with a double and three runs scored in game one. He did not play in game two.
In game two, Marco Carillo started and pitched three shutout innings. He allowed two hits and didn't walk anyone. Carrillo struck out four.
Ryan Buchter got the win in relief when the Smokies went ahead in the bottom of the sixth. Buchter pitched a shutout inning without allowing a hit. He walked one and struck out two.
David Cales got save number four with a perfect seventh inning. He did not have a strikeout.
DH Ty Wright hit a solo home run in the second inning. Wright walked in his only other trip to the plate.
The Daytona Cubs were mauled by the Lakeland Flying Tigers, 9-6.
Starter Brett Ebinger ran into trouble early and often. Ebinger lasted three innings and he gave up seven runs on eight hits. He only walked one, but he hit two batters. Ebinger had two strike outs.
Third baseman Matt Cerda hit a solo home run in the fifth inning, his first of the season. Cerda was 3 for 5 with two RBI. His slash stats so far this season are an even .400/.500/.600. (See, I told you he had good pop for a guy that small.)
Shortstop Junior Lake and left fielder Evan Crawford were both 2 for 4 with a double. Lake had one RBI and scored once. Crawford stole a base and scored twice.
Catcher Michael Brenly went 3 for 4 with a run scored. To the best of my knowledge, he did not eat a deep-fried Twinkie or a Rocky Mountain Oyster.
Center fielder Jae-Hoon Ha kept his batting average at .400 by going 2 for 5 with an RBI. He also got another outfield assist, throwing out a runner trying to score from second on a single to center field.
Normally they play John Forgerty's Centerfield during minor league ballgames. Perhaps Appleton should start playing his earlier Creedence Clearwater Revival song Who'll Stop the Rain?