Five Run Second Dooms Goldeyes Early
WINNIPEG, MB – A five-run second inning was too much to overcome as the Winnipeg Goldeyes (9-4) fell 10-3 to the Gary SouthShore Railcats (6-6) in the third and final game of their three-game set Thursday afternoon at Shaw Park.
The Railcats were trying to avoid the series sweep after losing two close games on Tuesday and Wednesday to Winnipeg, and their bats were working early and often in this one, getting to Winnipeg starting pitcher Harrison Cooney (1-1) early, putting up six runs in the first two innings en route to the win.
After falling behind 1-0 in the top of the first, Winnipeg rallied for three runs in the bottom of the inning to take a 3-1 lead.
Kevin Lachance and Josh Romanski hit back-to-back singles before Reggie Abercrombie knocked Lachance home with a single of his own, tying the game at one. After Willy Garcia loaded the bases with the Goldeyes fourth consecutive single, Railcats starter Lars Liguori forced a pop up to Wes Darvill for the first out of the inning. Adrian Marin would pick up his seventh RBI of the season with an groundout to score Romanski, and put the Goldeyes up 2-1. Six of Marin’s seven RBI’s this season have come on productive outs.
James Harris drew his league-leading 12thwalk of the season to load the bases before Alex Perez drove an RBI single to left that scored Abercrombie but a perfect throw from Colin Willis ended the inning as he threw out Garcia at the plate to end the threat, but not before the Goldeyes went up 3-1.
The Railcats answered in a big way in the top of the second, bringing 10 batters to the plate. With the bases loaded, Sean Guida forced a walk which brought home Danny De La Calle, cutting the lead to 3-2. Cooney then threw a wild pitch that scored Evan Marzilli from third to tie the game at three before Randy Santiesteban emptied the bases with a three-run RBI double to put the Railcats up 6-3. After a single from Colin Willis, Rick Forney brought in right hander Tyler Garkow to replace Cooney and Garkow struck out the next two batters to stop the bleeding, and hold the Railcats to five runs.
They (Railcats) don’t have a lot of boppers in the middle of the lineup, but you have to make sure you throw strikes. You can’t walk them,” says Goldeyes’ manager Rick Forney. “They were able to put the ball in play and make some things happen today.”
After hitting just three home runs all season long coming into the contest, the Railcats would smack a pair of two-run shots in both the seventh and eighth innings to round out the scoring. Andy DeJesus hit a two-out, two-run shot over the fence in left field off of Brandon Bingel to up the Railcats lead to 8-3, while Santiesteban brought home his fourth and fifth RBI’s of the afternoon with a two-run homer off the foul pole in left field to round out the scoring at 10-3 in the top of the eight.. Santiesteban finished the day 3-for-5 at the plate, with a home run, and five RBI’s.
It was the third time in the young season that the Goldeyes have put themselves in a position to sweep a series but have been unable to do so.
“It was a good series, we won the series that’s what you try to do and we were able to accomplish that,” says Forney. “Unfortunately we’ve had a couple chances to get the sweep (this season) and haven’t done that. It’s just one of those days.”
Garkow was strong in long relief, allowing no runs and striking out four in 3.1 innings, while Joel Bender also looked good, throwing a scoreless 1.1 in the middle innings. Forney says he was impressed with what he saw from both pitchers.
“He (Garkow) could find his way as a long reliever in this league, he got positive results and I’m happy for him,” says Forney. “We had a hot start offensively, real sloppy baseball and it kind of got away from us. Both Garkow and Bender gave us a chance in the middle of the game, just unfortunately we couldn’t get back into it.”
After allowing three runs in the first inning, Railcats starter Lars Ligouri settled in and at one point had sat down 12-of-13 Goldeye hitters, not allowing another run as he finished with three runs on seven hits with four strikeouts in 6.0 innings.
Winnipeg finished their first homestand of the season with a 4-2 record and will now hit the road for a quick three-game set in Sioux Falls against the Canaries. It will be the home-opener for the Canaries, who spent the first two weeks of the season on the road. Parker French (1-0) gets the call for the Goldeyes, and he will go head-to-head with Canaries left-hander Spencer Hermann (0-0).
After their brief three-day trip to Sioux Falls, the Goldeyes return home for a lengthy seven-game homestand beginning with a four-game set against the Sioux City Explorers on Monday, June 3rdat Shaw Park.
For information on 2019 season tickets, 10-game mini packs, and group tickets, call the Goldeyes’ office at (204) 982-BASE, or visit the Goldeyes’ official website at www.goldeyes.com.
By Steve Schuster