The St. Paul Saints returned home after splitting a four-game series in Winnipeg looking to put a little distance between themselves and those who are behind them in the standings in the North division. First up was the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, who trailed the Saints by one game entering Monday night’s contest. Chris Nunn was making his first start for St. Paul but it would be RedHawks starter DJ Brown who would make a lasting impression, tossing seven shutout innings for his fifth win of the season in the 4-0 victory.
The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks would give a rude welcoming to Nunn, scoring a run in the top of the first. Tim Colwell led off with a ground ball to the first baseman that he was able to beat out for a single. A passed ball moved him to second and he scored on an RBI double by Brennan Metzger.
In the third, the RedHawks would extend their lead to two. Yhoxian Medina started the rally with a base hit into right field. Two batters later, Maikol Gonzalez grounded a single into right field and an error allowed Medina to move to third. Metzger followed with a sacrifice fly, bringing in Medina to make it 2-0.
In the fifth, the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks would give themselves some breathing room. With one down, Medina was hit by a pitch and he scored when Colwell followed with a double into right field. Andrew Thome came on for St. Paul. He was able to induce Gonzalez to hit a ground ball, but the throw was late to the plate, allowing Colwell to score on the fielde’rs choice. That made it 4-0.
The Saints had their opportunities to score early. In the bottom of the first, St. Paul was able to load the bases with one down. Dante Bichette, Jr. then hit a fly ball to Devan Ahart and it looked like the Saints would tie the score, but a great throw by Ahart nailed the runner at the plate for a double play to end the threat.
In the fourth, St. Paul had another opportunity when they were able to load the bases with one out. This time, RedHawks starter DJ Brown struck out both Jake Smith and Anthony Phillips to end the inning and keep the Saints off the scoreboard.
That proved to be the last real opportunity that the Saints had to get into this game. Brown (5-0) retired the last seven batters he faced, coming out after seven innings. The right-hander allowed 5-hits and 2-walks, while striking out 9. Andrew Woeck and Randy McCurry each tossed a scoreless frame to finish off the contest.
Tim Colwell was 2-4 with 2-runs and an RBI for Fargo-Moorhead. Brennan Metzger drove into and Yhoxian Median scored two runs.
By Robert Pannier