SAUGET — Gateway starting pitcher Tim Brown won for the ninth time in his last 11 starts as the Grizzlies took down the River City Rascals 5-2 on Monday night at GCS Ballpark.
The win gave the Grizzlies their 15th series win of the season and kept them a game and a half ahead of the Schaumburg Boomers in the West Division standings.
Brown (11-2) allowed seven hits and two runs (both unearned) in 7 1/3 innings to notch the win. The right-hander from St. Louis improved to 23-4 in his Gateway career and 41-14 in his professional career.
"Tim was Tim tonight," Grizzlies manager Phil Warren said. "We know every time he pitches, he will give us a chance to win and he did that again tonight."
River City (33-36) scored two unanswered runs in the third inning. An error on Grizzlies second baseman Max Ayarza led to both Rascals runs, which came on a Danny Canela two-run single.
Gateway (42-28) answered with a pair of runs in the fourth inning to tie the game at two. Jonathan Johnson led off with a walk, Alex Guthrie was hit by a pitch, Chris McClendon advanced both runners on a bunt and Landon Hernandez brought in a run on a fielder's choice. Vladimir Frias capped off the scoring with a run-scoring single.
In the fifth inning, Ayarza hit a ground-rule double with one out and came in to score on a Guthrie RBI single to make it 3-2 Grzzlies.
Ayarza paced the Grizzlies offense with a 3-for-4 night.
Johnson, playing his first career game in center field, singled in a run in the seventh and Jon Myers hit his league-leading 17th home run of the season in the eighth inning to give the Grizzlies two insurance runs.
Richard Barrett pitched a perfect ninth inning for his 13th save of the year.
"This was a big win for us tonight," Warren mentioned. "We need to put together a streak now to give ourselves some separation in the division."
The Grizzlies have an off day Tuesday. Then Gateway begins a three-game home series with the visiting Rockford Aviators on Wednesday night. The first pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.