JACKSONVILLE, FL – The Iowa Cubs (61-74) ended on the wrong side of a back-and-forth game against the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp (73-61) at 121 Financial Ballpark, dropping Sunday’s game by a final score of 11-9.
Both offenses came out with a bang, as Matt Mervis and Jesus Sanchez traded home runs in the first inning to make it 1-1. After that, though, the scoring ground to a halt. Just three total runners reached bases in the second, third and fourth innings combined.
Jacksonville gained the upper hand in the fifth inning. Two walks opened the inning, then a double and two RBI groundouts put the Jumbo Shrimp up 3-1.
Their lead lasted until the seventh inning, when the offenses kicked it into high gear. Iowa tied the game with a three-run home run from Tyler Payne, but the tie was short lived. Just a half inning later, Jacksonville regained the lead with an RBI double.
The I-Cubs changed the momentum once again in the top of the eighth. After a leadoff hit batter, they strung together two walks and three singles to plate four runs and take their first lead of the game. Iowa capped off the scoring with a sacrifice fly, making it a 9-5 ballgame.
Jacksonville didn’t let that lead stand, either. Troy Johnston hit a home run on the first pitch of the bottom of the eighth to cut Iowa’s lead to three, then – like the I-Cubs – the Jumbo Shrimp used two walks and three singles to tie the game at nine. Peyton Burdick dealt the final blow of Jacksonville’s half of the eighth with a two-run double, giving them back the lead at 11-9.
After the flurry of scoring in the previous two innings, Iowa went quickly in the ninth. George Soriano retired all three men he faced and the game ended in an 11-9 Jacksonville victory.
Tyler Payne’s home run was first of the year, and his four RBI set a new season high.
Matt Mervis’ home run was his 11th of the year with Iowa and his fifth of the 12-game road trip.
Darius Hill went 3-for-5, his sixth three-hit game of the year.
With the series loss, Iowa is now 0-5-6 in road series play this season.
Iowa will return home to begin a series against the Memphis Redbirds on Tuesday. First pitch between the I-Cubs and the Redbirds is set for 6:38. For more information and tickets, visit www.iowacubs.com.
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