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Baseball: Slammers rally past Normal CornBelters 8-4

The Slammers' Adam Giaclone waits for pitch Wednesday vs. normal. | Tim Tierney/For Sun-Times Media

The Slammers' Adam Giaclone waits for a pitch Wednesday vs. normal. | Tim Tierney/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: July 21, 2014 3:32PM



Down 4-1 when rain arrived in the fourth inning, the Joliet Slammers had nearly 90 minutes to regroup and start over Wednesday against the Normal CornBelters.

“Any time you have a rain delay you kind of relax, you get out of game mode,’’ Marquis Riley said. “But we did a good job of staying in it. We had guys stay in the dugout, guys went and hit on the tee. I think that contributed later in the game.’’

Riley contributed a three-run homer in a six-run seventh inning that gave Joliet an 8-4 victory and ended Normal’s six-game win streak in front of a crowd of 2,648 on Day Camp Day at Silver Cross Field.

“I tried to put the first part of the game behind me,’’ Joliet manager Jeff Isom said. “I liked the end when we scored all those runs.’’

“That was big time,’’ Riley said of the comeback. “We had guys get on at the top of the order. We put ’em in scoring position and we got big hits when we needed to.’’

The Slammers (13-16) began the seventh-inning rally with one-out singles by Adam Lewis (2-for-4, 2 runs) and Max Casper (2-for-4, run).

Lewis scored when Jose Garcia reached on an error, and Russell Moldenhauer singled to drive in Casper and make it a 4-all game.

Normal first baseman Aaron Dudley dropped a popup at the Slammers’ dugout to keep Grant DeBruin in the batter’s box.

“I thought he caught it and the ump said, ‘Nope, dropped it,’ ’’ DeBruin said. “Very thankful for having a second chance.’’

Two pitches later, DeBruin’s third hit of the game scored Garcia to put Joliet ahead 5-4. Riley followed by launching the first pitch over the right-field wall for an 8-4 cushion.

“Hanging slider,’’ he said. “I was sitting fastball and just kind of reacted to it.’’

Joliet starting pitcher Kody McFarland allowed all four runs on six hits and two walks before yielding to Sam Moore after 31/3 innings.

“Pitching, we struggled to command our fastball and worked a lot of deep counts. It wasn’t good,’’ Isom said. “I think that rain helped us out a little bit, kind of cleared our heads a little, got back to work.’’

Santo Manzanillo (1-2, 2.57 ERA) worked the sixth and seventh to get the win while Brett Zawacki and Jordan Wellander pitched the eighth and ninth, respectively.

Adam Giacalone had an RBI single in the sixth to cut Normal’s lead to 4-2. Jose Garcia’s sacrifice fly had made it 4-1 in the third.

Ozney Guillen, son of former White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen, hit his second homer of the season for the CornBelters (13-15).

Joliet’s Andrew Busby (1-2, 4.00) is scheduled to pitch the series finale at 7:05 p.m. Thursday.



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