Tapia, Lingua Homer Twice in Loss to Canaries
By Ryan Zimmerman, Gary SouthShore RailCats
Sioux Falls, SD – The Gary SouthShore RailCats (10-10) swung the bats well at Sioux Falls Stadium, but the Sioux Falls Canaries (8-12) found a way to outslug them en route to a 13-12 victory.
The two teams combined for 25 runs on 30 hits in the highest-scoring game the RailCats have played so far this season.
Gary SouthShore got the scoring started right away in the top of the first. Victor Nova connected on a two-out solo home run to put the ‘Cats on the board 1-0.
One inning later, a pair of long balls extended the early RailCats lead to four. Emmanuel Tapia led off by blasting a home run over the right field wall, and following a Francisco Del Valle single, Daniel Lingua roped a two-run blast, capping off a three-run rally.
However, the Canaries were quick to equalize. Darnell Sweeney and Jordan Barth connected on back-to-back two-out home runs, leveling the score at four apiece.
After neither team plated a run in the third inning, Sioux Falls struck for three in the fourth. Consecutive singles to begin the frame set Jordan Barth up with two runners on base, and the shortstop came through and provided a double to give the Canaries their first lead. Wellington Dotel grounded out to plate another run, and Jabari Henry legged out an infield single that hit the third base bag, pulling ahead by three themselves.
The RailCats managed to turn the deficit around in their next two turns at-bat, re-tying the ballgame at seven. A bases-loaded double play resulted in a run in the fifth, and Jesus Marriaga delivered a two-run home run of his own, placing the two teams on equal footing once again.
With the score even, the Canaries wasted no time restoring their advantage. Henry poked a two-run home run over the left field wall, moving Sioux Falls up 9-7.
The RailCats pulled a run back in the seventh inning as Lingua launched a leadoff home run, his second of the contest, but Sioux Falls afforded themselves some breathing room in the bottom half. Dotel knocked a double off the fence in right-center field to chase home a pair, providing the Canaries a three-run cushion.
Down to their final three outs, the RailCats pieced together a four-run eighth inning to go back up by one, sending 10 to the plate in the process. Tapia crushed his second solo home run to begin the frame before Del Valle and Marriaga each drew walks to position the tying run on first base. Thomas Greely then sacrifice bunted them both over, allowing Lingua the opportunity to drive them both in, stroking a double off of third base to do so. Gio Díaz then found his way aboard via catcher’s interference and Nova coaxed a walk to load the bases for LG Castillo, and his hit-by-pitch gave Gary SouthShore the 12-11 edge.
Sioux Falls struck back immediately in their half of the eighth as a Wyatt Ulrich single and RailCat error turned their one-run deficit into a lead heading into the final frame.
Del Valle drew a base on balls to begin Gary SouthShore’s final turn at bat, and a Marriaga double looked certain to even the score. But, the Sioux Falls defense stepped up to deny the RailCats the tying run as they cut down Del Valle at home plate to halt their momentum right in its tracks. The next two batters proceeded to strike out and ground out, sealing a Canaries win.
The RailCats will look to get back into the win column tomorrow at 5:35 as they return to Sioux Falls Stadium to face the Canaries. All the action will be streamed on aabaseball.tv or can be heard over the radio on 95.9 WEFM or the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network via the Mixlr app.