Cedar Rapids, IA – A Danny Hudzina home run with one out in the top of the ninth tied the game but the Peoria Chiefs were walked off in the bottom of the inning on two straight two-out hits for a 6-5 loss at the Cedar Rapids Kernels Saturday night. The loss drops the Chiefs to 10-7 in the second half and 40-46 overall.
The Chiefs jumped out to an early lead for the second day in a row as Kramer Robertson led off with his first professional hit, a double to left, off Griffin Jax. Robertson moved to third on a groundout and scored on an error by first baseman Amaurys Minier as Dylan Carlson picked up the RBI.
The Chiefs led 1-0 with Evan Kruczynski on the mound in the bottom of the second. With one down Minier led off with a single and Caleb Hamilton drew a walk. Trey Cabbage singled to load the bases and Andre Jernigan gave the Kernels a 2-1 lead with a double to the wall in right field. Gorge Munoz capped the inning with a two-run single to center for a 4-1 Kernels lead.
Peoria still trailed by three when Vince Jackson led off the fourth with his fifth home run of the season. Jackson’s blast went out to right-center by the video board and cut Cedar Rapids lead to 4-2. Stefan Trosclair followed with a single and moved to second on a groundout. Danny Hudzina grounded out to third base and Trosclair took off for third, coming around to score on a bad throw back to third by Minier.
The Chiefs rallied in the sixth to knock Jax from the game. Jackson led off with a double and moved to third on an infield single by Trosclair. He came home to tie the game on a fielders’ choice to first off the bat of Mick Fennell. Patrick McGuff came out of the bullpen to end the inning with the game tied 4-4.
Cedar Rapids regained the lead in the eighth against Max Almonte. Munoz led off with a triple past a diving Nick Plummer in center field and scored on a triple by Aaron Whitehead as his fly ball hit off a diving Fennell in left-center. Eric Carter took over for Almonte and recorded two strikeouts and a ground out to strand Whitehead with the Chiefs down 5-4.
The Chiefs tied the game in the top of the ninth against reliever Hector Lujan. With one down Danny Hudzina launched an absolute no-doubter out of the stadium to left field, his fifth home run of the season and third of the second half. Robertson added a two-out single but was left on base as Plummer struck out.
Dewin Perez took over of the Chiefs in the bottom of the inning and got the first two batters out before giving up a single to Joe Cronin. After Cronin stole second base, Travis Blankenhoorn walked off the game with a double to right field for the 6-5 winner.
Kruczynski allowed a four runs on six hits and two walks over 4 1/3 innings while striking out five in a no-decision. Almonte allowed one run on three hits over 1 2/3 innings as he struck out two. Carter allowed one hit over two shutout innings while striking out four. Perez (1-3) took the loss as he allowed one run on two hits over 2/3 of inning while striking out one.