Hanging 10 on the Mississippi River that flows past the right field wall at Modern Woodmen Park is a bit of a challenge, but that won’t prevent the Quad-Cities River Bandits from trying.
Quad-Cities is riding a wave of Midwest League momentum right now, finishing off a perfect seven-game homestand Tuesday with its eighth consecutive victory and 5-0 shutout of Beloit.
“We want to keep riding that wave, too, keep getting better,’’ River Bandits manager Russ Steinhorn said. “We want to be the best at getting better and that’s what these guys are working on every single day.’’
Quad-Cities now sits at 67-46 on the season. The four-game sweep of Beloit leaves the River Bandits not only with the team’s longest win streak since a 12-game run late in the 2015 season, but also with a four-game lead in the Western Division standings.
The River Bandits reached the eight-game high-water mark for the season by combining a 4-for-4 game at the plate from Daz Cameron with the collaborative three-hit, 12-strikeout performance of Cristian Javier, Gabriel Valdez and Robert Corniel on the mound.
“We’re doing the little things right and those little things lead to big things,’’ said Cameron, whose work in the clean-up spot in the Quad-Cities batting order began with a three-run home run in the bottom of the first inning.
That gave Javier plenty of room to work on the way to his first Midwest League victory in four appearances with the River Bandits.
The right hander struck out seven batters over five walk-free innings. The only two hits he allowed came off the bat of the Snappers’ Jesus Lopez, who followed a single in the first inning with a leadoff triple in the fourth.
Javier got Luke Persico to flyout to shallow center before he left Lopez on third by striking out clean-up hitter Kyle Nowlin and Edwin Diaz to end the threat, an effort Valdez followed by retiring all nine batters he faced.
“Terrific pitching, it is anytime you shut somebody out,’’ Steinhorn said. “Javier was really good, mixed his pitches well and kept them off balance. He got them to chase a lot of stuff outside of the zone. … Valdez was sharp as he continues to get back into it. It was a good overall effort.’’
Cameron rattled his 13th home run of the season off of a fence on top of the wall in left-center. The ball bounced back onto the field as Troy Sieber and Abraham Toro-Hernandez raced home as Cameron worked his way toward third.
“He gave me a slider in that I was able to stay on and square the baseball,’’ Cameron said. “I knew I had hit it good. I didn’t know for sure if it was gone, but I was going to get a triple no matter what before I saw they said it was above the home run line. It was a good way to start.’’
Cameron and the River Bandits didn’t stop.
Cameron added singles in the third, fifth and seventh innings and helped Quad-Cities add single runs to its lead in the third and fifth innings.
Josh Rojas lined a single to right in the third to score Cameron, who had reached second on his 24th stolen base of the season.
Two innings later, Toro-Hernandez doubled with one out and scored when Cameron drove a ball up into center.
“We’ve all come together and what we’re seeing is what happens when it works out that way,’’ Cameron said. “We’re working hard, working on the little things and that is letting us win ballgames.’’