South Bend, Ind.—The South Bend Cubs scored six runs in the second inning on the way to an 8-3 win over the Dayton Dragons on Thursday night. The game was the start to a four-game series for the Dragons in South Bend and the opener to a seven-game road trip.
With the loss, the Dragons fell to 9-5 on the season as South Bend improved to 8-6. The Dragons lead in the Midwest League’s East Division by one-half game over Lake County.
The Dragons jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning when Jose Siri began the game with a triple to the right field corner and scored on John Sansone’s RBI ground out before Avain Rachal belted a solo home run to right field, his first homer of the year.
But South Bend responded with six runs in the bottom of the second inning, collecting seven hits in the frame. Zack Short had a two-run double to highlight the inning. The Cubs added single runs in the third and fourth innings to extend their lead to 8-2. The Dragons closed out the scoring with one run in the eighth when Siri tripled and scored on Sansone’s single.
The Dragons collected nine hits. Siri tied a club record with two triples, going 2 for 5 with two runs scored. T.J. Friedl was 2 for 4.
Dragons starting pitcher Ryan Olson had his first rough outing of the year after tossing 16 scoreless innings in his first two starts when he never allowed a single runner to reach third base. Olson (2-1) worked two and two-thirds innings on Thursday night, allowing eight hits and seven runs (six earned) with two walks and two strikeouts. After an easy first inning, Olson allowed six runs in the second and another in the third before departing.
Dragons reliever Jesse Stallings replaced Olson in the third and worked two and one-third innings, allowing one run on two hits with two walks and two strikeouts. Patrick Riehl worked a perfect sixth inning for the Dragons. Lucas Benenati followed Riehl with two more perfect innings as Dragons relievers combined to retire the final 13 batters of the game.
The Dragons and Cubs meet again on Friday night in the second game of the series at 7:35 p.m. Andrew Jordan (1-0, 4.00) will start for the Dragons against South Bend’s Jose Paulino (0-0, 2.25).
All Dragons games are broadcast on radio on Fox Sports 980 WONE and on the internet at wone.com. Games are also available on the Dayton Dragons mobile app.