Peoria, IL- The Peoria Chiefs beat the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers 6-0 Friday night for their second shutout in a row as Ryan Helsley struck out a career-high 11. The Chiefs and Timber Rattlers play game three of the four series at 1:00 pm Saturday.
The Chiefs offense scored in the bottom of the first for the second night in a row against Timber Rattlers pitching. Eli Alvarez singled off starter Jake Drossner to begin the inning and Edmundo Sosa followed with a single to center. With one out and runners at the corners, Orlando Olivera delivered a single scoring Alvarez from third giving the Chiefs a 1-0 lead and two batters later Chris Chinea singled scoring Sosa. Chinea and Olivera executed a double steal placing runners on second and third. Casey Turgeon reached on a fielding error by Wisconsin second baseman Blake Allemand scoring both runners for a 4-0 lead.
The Chiefs continued to apply pressure to Drossner in the bottom of the second. With one out the duo of Alvarez and Sosa struck again. Alvarez walked and stole second, then Sosa doubled to give the Chiefs a 5-0 lead.
Helsley was in command from the beginning on the mound for the Chiefs. He struck out three straight Rattlers with a runner on second in the second and allowed his only hit with two down in the third inning. Helsley struck out three Rattlers in the fourth and two each in the fifth and sixth before giving way to the bullpen with a shutout intact.
The Chiefs got an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning off Wisconsin reliever Connor Harber. Alvarez doubled and Sosa singled home his second RBI of the game giving the Chiefs a 6-0 lead.
Helsley (1-1) extended the Chiefs scoreless streak to 15 innings allowing one hit through six innings and walking two with the 11 strikeouts. Sasha Keubel relieved Helsley in the top of the seventh and pitched two shutout innings giving up no runs, one hit and no walks with two strikeouts. Landon Beck came in for the ninth to close out the game giving up one hit and two walks, striking out two and surrendering no runs.
Notes: The Chiefs recorded their second shutout of the season…The Chiefs pitching staff has not allowed a run in 18 innings…Sosa extended his hit streak to 11 games on a single to center in the bottom of the first…The Chiefs are 6-1 when leading after five innings…The Chiefs scored runs in the first inning in back-to-back games for the first time this season …The Chiefs are 6-2 on the season when scoring first…Helsley picked up his first win of the season. Helsley struck out a career high 11 batters… Chris Chinea and Orlando Olivera each picked up their first career steals on a double steal…. Starting pitchers have gone at least five innings in all 15 games…The Chiefs pitching staff combined for 15 strikeouts after having 12 on Thursday…The homestand continues as the Chiefs play game three a four game series with the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers Saturday at 1:00 pm…Saturday all kids 12 and under get $1.00 tickets and hot dogs are also $1.00…The Chiefs will start RH Junior Fernandez (2-0, 2.77) against Wisconsin RH Freddy Peralta (1-0. 2.08)…The broadcast can be heard, starting with the Pre-Game Show at 12:45 p.m., on www.peoriachiefs.com/listenlive which also has downloads for a free app on the iPhone, iPad, Blackberry and Android. The broadcast is also available on the Peoria Chiefs Network in the Tune-In Radio App.