Zephyrs fall to Iowa in series opener

Cubs 5, Zephyrs 2

Iowa jumped on the Zephyrs’ Tom Koehler for four runs in the third inning to take the opener of the three-game series Monday night at Zephyr Field.

The Zephyrs took a 2-0 lead on Gorkys Hernandez’s homer leading off the first and a single by Gil Velazquez that drove in Koehler in the second. The Z’s were held without a hit the rest of the game by Iowa starter Chris Rusin (8-7) and relievers Yoanner Negrin and Brian Schlitter.

Iowa’s Luis Flores, batting .173, led off the third with a solo homer, followed by doubles by Rusin and Logan Watkins that tied the score. Two more runs scored on Brad Nelson’s double and Junior Lake’s RBI groundout.

Koehler (0-2) was making his first start since rejoining the Z’s from the Miami Marlins on Saturday. Walker’s Josh Wall pitched a scoreless ninth, allowing two hits.

TUESDAY’S GAME

What: Iowa Cubs at Zephyrs.

When: 7 p.m.

Where: Zephyr Field, Metairie.

Probable pitchers: Cubs RHP Nick Struck (5-5, 5.94 ERA) vs. Zephyrs RHP Doug Mathis (3-7, 4.20).

Broadcast: WMTI-FM, 106.1.

Promotion: It’s Triple Play Tuesday. Fans can get an upper-deck ticket, a taco and a soft drink for $1.

STARRING ROLES

Zephyrs reliever Zach Phillips was chosen to replace Chris Hatcher on the Pacific Coast League All-Star team.

Hatcher, who was leading all of the minor leagues with 24 saves, was given a spot on the All-Star team last week, but he was called up to the Miami Marlins on Sunday. Officially, that gives the Zephyrs two All-Star pitchers, only the second time that has happened. In 2002, Jeriome Robertsonand Wayne Franklin were chosen.

Phillips allowed one run in 18 innings from May 28 to June 10. More recently, he allowed one run on four hits and one walk with nine strikeouts in eight games before giving up a homer in the ninth Saturday vs. Oklahoma City.

Phillips, a left-hander, has held opponents to a .211 batting average and has limited lefties to a .180 average. He’s 4-1 with a 2.04 ERA.

WORTH WATCHING

Iowa outfielder Ty Wright had a season-high three hits Friday at Albuquerque and has hit safely in five consecutive games and eight of nine since returning to Iowa from Double-A Tennessee.

Heading into Monday, he had batted .394 (13-for-33) in nine games, with three doubles, two homers, 11 RBIs and six runs. He was hitting .280 in 22 games with Iowa.

DOUBLEHEADER ON THE WAY

Sunday’s rained-out game against Oklahoma City has been rescheduled. The teams will play a doubleheader Friday in Oklahoma City, with the made-up game now a home game for the RedHawks. The Zephyrs’ rainout in Sunday’s series finale was their third of the season and second at home.