Des Moines, Iowa — Ryan Dent’s eighth-inning bunt single scored the go-ahead run and the Iowa Cubs rallied to defeat the New Orleans Zephyrs 6-5 on Sunday.
The Z’s took a 5-4 lead into the eighth inning with closer Nick Wittgren on the mound. Wittgren was a perfect eight-for-eight in save opportunities, but was called on for a six-out save. The Cubs’ Mike Olt doubled to start the inning and advanced to third base on a sacrifice bunt. Junior Lake doubled him home to tie the game. Lake advanced to third base on an error by first baseman Michael Morse. Dent bunted towards first allowing Lake to score the winning run.
Gonzalez Germen (5-1) picked up the win and Wittgren (1-2) took the defeat for the Zephyrs. Brian Schlitter pitched into trouble in the ninth, but earned his sixth save.
The Z’s fell behind early 4-0, but rallied with 10 batters coming to the plate and scoring five runs all with two outs in the sixth inning. Vinny Rottino led the Z’s with four hits. The Z’s outhit Iowa 13-12.
The Cubs lead the series 2-1. New Orleans is 34-40, 101/2 games back of first-place Round Rock.
The Zephyrs added Austin Nola, a former LSU standout, from Class AA Jacksonville. He had a pinch-hit sacrifice bunt in his debut against the Cubs.
The Zephyrs left 11 men on base and were 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position.
The blown save by Wittgren is his first of the season. The Zephyrs have 12 blown saves on the season.
New Orleans drops to 8-16 in games decided by one run.
Miami first baseman Morse on a rehab assignment was 2-for-3, with a run and two errors.
The Zephyrs return home on the Fourth of July. It will be the start of a four-game homestand against the Iowa Cubs.