Lost in the power surge that the Lincoln Saltdogs have been displaying is the fact that the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks are putting up some impressive home run numbers of their own. That was on display Wednesday afternoon as the team hit three long balls to help aid a 7-1 victory over the St. Paul Saints. Maikol Gonzalez was one of three RedHawks to homer while driving in three and Sebastian Kessay tossed 6.2 outstanding innings for the victory.
The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks would take command of this game from the start. In the top of the first, Brennan Metzger doubled into left field to get the game started, bringing Maikol Gonzalez to the plate. On a 3-1 pitch, he crushed his second home run of the season to put the RedHawks in front 2-0. Matt Solter struck out the next two batters, but Leobaldo Pina would drill his first home run of the season to extend the lead to three. Tommy Mendonca kept the inning alive with a double and he scored on a base hit by Tim Colwell to make it 4-0.
In the top of the second, Yhoxian Medina led off by beating out a ground ball to short for a single. Steve Steven was then hit by pitch. Two batters later, Gonzalez singled into left field, scoring Medina to make it a 5-0 lead.
Sebastian Kessay dominated the Saints early on. He did not allow a hit through the first 4.2-innings, with the only baserunner coming on a hit by pitch in the first. The run was finally broken up on a two-out single by Justin O’Conner in the fifth.
Kessay would allowed just three hits through the first six innings but, in the seventh, St. Paul would finally break through. Jayce Boyd singled with one out and moved to second on a walk to Richard Prigatano. O’Conner followed with a sharp single up the middle to load the bases before Kes Carter struck out. JJ Gould then drew a five pitch walk, driving home Boyd.
The bases were still loaded and the tying run at the plate. That brought a call to the bullpen, as Travis Ballew came on. He quickly got ahead of Josh Allen 1-2 before striking out the Saints second baseman to end the frame.
In the eighth, Fargo-Moorhead would extend their lead. With one down, Mendonca hit his third home run of the season. Two batters later, Medina singled and he scored on an error to make it 7-1.
Sebastian Kessay (2-1) finished with 6.2-innings pitched. He allowed 5-hits, 2-walks, and a run. He struck out 6. Maikol Gonzalez was 2-4 with and 3-RBI. Tommy Mendonca was 2-4 with 2-runs and an RBI. Justin O’Conner had 2-hits for the Saints.
The St. Paul Saints are off on Thursday. They will travel to Chicago on Friday to take on the Chicago Dogs for the first time in franchise history. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05.
By Robert Pannier