The host South Bend (Ind.) Cubs held off the Bowling Green Hot Rods for a 2-1 win Wednesday in Midwest League action.
Wander Franco had two hits and Shane McClanahan allowed three hits over five innings of two-run ball, but the Hot Rods fell short. Bowling Green will seek to avoid the sweep Thursday in the three-game series finale. Game time is 6:05 p.m. CDT.
South Bend took the lead in the second inning on Chris Morel’s RBI double. The Cubs added to that lead an inning later as Gustavo Polanco led off the third with a solo home run to right, giving South Bend a 2-0 lead.
Offensively, Bowling Green struggled to get much going against Cubs starter Faustino Carrera. Carrera retired 14 straight Hot Rods in the first five innings.
With two outs in the ninth, Cubs reliever Eugenio Palma allowed an RBI single to Franco to cut the lead to 2-1, but Palma struck out Chris Betts to end the game, sending Bowling Green to a second straight loss.
McClanahan (4-4), who allowed two runs on three hits while walking one and striking out six, took the loss. Miller Hogan worked three scoreless innings in relief, allowing one hit while striking out two.
On Thursday, right-hander Alan Strong (4-1, 2.45 ERA) will start for Bowling Green against Cubs righty Riley Thompson (3-3, 2.43).