Kernels Use Long Ball to Sting Bees, 12-3

Courtesy: Cedar Rapids Kernels

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By James Steward

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - The Kernels tied season highs in runs, hits, and home runs in a 12-3 drubbing of the Burlington Bees on Tuesday night. The Kernels pounded out 16 hits, including four home runs, in the victory.

Kernels starting pitcher A.J. Schugel (3-2) picked up the win, giving up one run on four hits over five innings. Schugel has gone five innings in all five of his starts this season.

Cedar Rapids jumped out in front of the Bees in the first inning, scoring a run on a Ricky Alvarez RBI single to make the score, 1-0.

Burlington's Jose Rivero tied the game 1-1 in the fourth inning when he blooped a two-out single to centerfield, scoring Ryan Pineda.

In the fourth inning Brandon Decker doubled to left field, scoring Justin Bass to give the squad a 2-1 edge. Marcus Nidiffer came to the plate next and belted a two-run homer that just cleared the left field fence. The homer was Nidiffer's sixth of the season.

Cedar Rapids added to its lead on in the fifth inning, scoring a pair of runs on back-to-back RBI singles by Jeremy Cruz and Ricky Alvarez.

Two runs came home for the Bees in the top of the sixth, making the score 6-3. Josh Whitaker hit a solo home run for the Bees, cutting the Kernels lead to 6-2. Jose Rivero picked up his second RBI of the ballgame in sixth, as well, plating Yordy Cabrera on an RBI groundout to first base.

The Kernels would not allow the Bees to make a comeback, delivering the knockout punch in the seventh inning. Cedar Rapids scored five runs thanks to a pair of home runs by Jeremy Cruz and Brandon Decker, making the score 11-3.

In the ninth inning Rolando Gomez smacked his first home run to center, giving the Kernels a 12-3 lead.

Seth Fowler pitched the final four innings for the Kernels, picking up his first save. He allowed two runs on four hits while striking out three. He retired the final eleven Bees that came to the plate.

Nate Long (5-2) started and took the loss for Burlington. He went four innings, allowing four runs on eight hits.

The Kernels will be on the road for the next three nights, opening up a commuter series at Clinton on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. The Kernels return home on Saturday to open up a nine game, ten day home stand. Saturday's game is against Peoria, the Chicago Cubs minor leaguers, at 6:35 p.m. It's Harry Potter Night. The first 1,000 fans through the gates will receive a free Harry Potter magic wand. Fans can meet can meet characters Harry Potter, Hermoine Granger, and Rubeus Hagrid, portrayed by the talented impersonators of Mischief Managed. Enjoy a spectacular fireworks show following the game presented by Z 102.9.

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