Sanchez Shines But Railroaders Bats Silenced in Cleburne
CLEBURNE, Texas (Sep. 8, 2021) – Patrick Ledet and Max Kuhns combined on a four-hit shutout as the Sioux City Explorers blanked the Cleburne Railroaders 4-0 in the South Division Wild Card Game.
The loss ends the 2021 season for the Railroaders, who reached the postseason for the first time in franchise history. Sioux City moves on to the South Division Championship Series, where they will meet the Kansas City Monarchs.
Ledet and Cleburne starter Jesus Sanchez traded zeroes through each of the first five innings, with only five combined singles allowed. With two outs and bases empty in the top of the sixth, however, Sioux City slugger Jose Sermo slammed a solo home run to right, putting the Explorers in front 1-0.
Cleburne’s best scoring threat came in the bottom of the sixth, when Osvaldo Martinez singled, D.J. Peterson was hit by a pitch, and Zach Nehrir worked a two-out walk. Sioux City escaped the jam when Chase Simpson flew out to left to strand the bases loaded.
The Explorers added to the lead in the seventh when Sebastian Zawada led off with a double, and his pinch runner Chase Harris came around to score on a wild pitch and a sacrifice fly from Lane Milligan, doubling the lead to 2-0.
Reliever Michael Krauza kept the Railroaders within striking distance over two strong innings, retiring all six he faced with three strikeouts. The Explorers added two more insurance runs in the top of the ninth when Milligan hooked a two-run homer down the line in right for the final margin.
Sioux City’s Max Kuhns allowed just one single over the final four frames to earn a 12-out save, retiring the side in order over his final two innings.
Ledet earned the win with his five shutout innings, striking out two while allowing just three hits. Sanchez ended with a tough-luck defeat, tagged for two runs on four hits while fanning three.
For information on partnerships, season tickets, group outings, and party packages, call the Railroaders main office at (817) 945-8705, or visit the Railroaders official website at www.railroaderbaseball.com.
By Denning Gerig, Cleburne Railroaders