Reggie Abercrombie Red Hot in Return, Goldeyes Down Saints 8-4
After sweeping their first series of the second half of the season, the St. Paul Saints returned home to face division rival Winnipeg Sunday night in the start of a four-game series. Kramer Sneed started for the home team, and found the Winnipeg Goldeyes to be very rude guests as the visitors won 8-4 behind huge offensive nights by Adam Heisler and Reggie Abercrombie.
The Goldeyes opened with two runs in the top of the first inning. Heisler started the game with a single to right field and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Casio Grider. Casey Haerther drew a walk to put two runners on and Abercrombie followed with a base hit that brought Heisler home for the early 1-0 lead. Two batters later Brad Boyer singled up the middle scoring Haerther to extend the lead to two.
Winnipeg Goldeyes starter Matt Jackson retired the Saints in order in the first, but in the second the home team tied the score. Angelo Songco hit a deep fly ball to center field that hit off the top of the wall and caromed away from the center fielder for a stand up triple to begin the inning. Mike Kvasnicka grounded to second for the first out of the inning, but Songco came home to score. Joey Paciorek singled and two batters later newcomer Ryan Lashley doubled down the line in left field to bring Paciorek all the way around from first to tie the score.
The Goldeyes responded right away, scoring two against Sneed in the top of the third to retake the lead. With one out Abercrombie singled into left field. Two batters later he would steal his second base of the season and scored when Boyer lined a single up the middle. Ryan Babineau followed the Boyer hit with a double to make it 4-2.
Jackson allowed two runners to reach in the bottom half of the inning, but he kept the two-run lead intact. That was good because in the top half of the fourth his club rewarded him with three more runs to make it a 7-2 game. Back-to-back triples by Chris Robinson and Heisler started the frame and made it a 5-2 lead. Two batters later Haerther hit a sacrifice fly to right field that scored Heisler. Abercrombie then lined his first home run of the season over the left field wall to make it 7-2.
With a five-run lead, the Goldeyes starter really settled in, keeping the Saints off the scoreboard from the third through the fifth innings. In the sixth St. Paul would get two of the runs back. Paciorek singled with one out and moved to second on a single by Phillips, last night’s hero. Jackson was replaced by Rett Verner, who got Lashley to fly out, but walked Dan Kaczrowski to load the bases. Alonzo Harris followed with a base hit up the middle that scored both Paciorek and Phillips and it was 7-4. That is as close as the St. Paul Saints would get.
Varner, Brendan Lafferty and Jalien Peguero combined to pitch 3.2 innings of scoreless relief to close out the game. Jackson was the winner to move to 4-6. Sneed (9-2) took the loss, breaking his seven-game winning streak.
Heisler finished a perfect 4-4 with 2 runs and an RBI. He also walked once. Abercrombie went 3-4 with 2 runs and 3 RBI. In just his second game since being reacquired by the Winnipeg Goldeyes Abercrombie already has five hits.
Harris finished 2-5 for St. Paul with 2 RBI. Songco remains incredibly hot, going 3-5 with a run. He has six hits in his last two games, and is 18-44 in his last 10 games with 6 runs and 10 RBI.
By Robert Pannier