Bottom Third of Saints Order Leads Team with Power Surge, 6-4
SIOUX FALL, SD (July 26, 2020) – The St. Paul Saints have played 12 games in Sioux Falls Stadium this year against the Sioux Falls Canaries. They’re getting used to the friendly confines on the offensive side. The Saints blasted three home runs and got great relief from Nick Belzer and Jameson McGrane to take the rubber game of the three-game series against the Canaries 6-4 on Sunday evening.
The Saints jumped on Canaries starter Ty Culbreth in the second inning after he walked the leadoff hitter, Josh Allen, and John Silviano with one out. Mitch Ghelfi then went the opposite way with a three-run homer to right-center, his second of the season, to make it 3-0.
The Canaries got a three-run homer of their own in the fourth as Clint Coulter singled with one out. With two outs Logan Landon walked and Grant Kay followed with a three-run shot to right, his second of the season, tying the game at three.
The Canaries grabbed the lead on a miscue in the fifth. Andrew Ely led off the inning with a single to left and, with one out, Alay Lago singled him to second. Damek Tomscha then hit a high tapper back to the mound that Eddie Medina fielded, looked at second and decided to throw to first, but he threw it over the head of John Silviano allowing Ely to score making it 4-3. Saints starter Eddie Medina went 6.0 innings allowing four runs (three earned) on eight hits while walking two and striking out six.
Culbreth entered the sixth having retired eight in a row and proceeded to retire the first two hitters in the inning. That streak ended with a walk to Allen. Max Murphy then drilled a two-run home run to right, his third of the season, giving the Saints a 5-4 lead. Silviano made it back-to-back home runs with a solo blast to right, his fifth of the season and second in as many games, giving the Saints a 6-4 lead.
The rest was up to the Saints bullpen. Belzer retired the first five men he faced before a two out walk in the eighth. He struck out Logan Landon to end the inning.
In the ninth Jameson McGrane mowed down the Canaries fanning the first two hitters he faced before getting Andrew Ely to ground out to end the game.
The Saints have Monday off before heading the Newman Outdoor Field to take on the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks in a three-game series beginning Tuesday at 7:02 p.m. The Saints send RHP Matt Solter (3-1, 4.15) to the mound against RedHawks RHP Ryan Williams (1-1, 3.86). The game can be heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM.
By Sean Aronson, St. Paul Saints