Bates Fans 15 as Explorers Take Series Opener
By Austin Thomas, Sioux City Explorers
KANSAS CITY, Kan.— On Pride Night at Legends Field, Solomon Bates (4-3) dominated over seven innings to help the Sioux City Explorers (16-19) take the crown in a 5-2 win over the Kansas City Monarchs (22-11) Tuesday night. Bates allowed one run on five hits and one walk while adding 15 strikeouts over his outing. The Monarchs remain in first place in the West Division, although Milwaukee claims the best record in the American Association.
Miguel Sierra initiated the coup with a solo shot off Monarchs Brandon Finnegan (2-1) to take the lead 1-0 in the top of the second. Sioux City’s Bates struck out the side in the first before striking out two the next inning, but allowing one run on an Olivier Basabe RBI single that scored Micker Adolfo to tie the game 1-1 in the bottom of the second.
The X’s scored another in the third off Finnegan when John Nogowski followed up a Chase Harris triple with an RBI single to make it 2-1. Bates held the Monarchs scoreless in the bottom of the third, striking out the side in a perfect frame.
In the fifth, with Delvin Zinn on base after an error on the Monarch’s shortstop L.J. Hatch and a Harris double, John Nogowski roped a two-out homer to left field off Finnegan, giving Sioux City a 5-1 lead. Over the next three innings, Bates added five more strikeouts to his total of 15 on the night.
Kansas City’s Grant Gavin struck out two in the eighth before their offense scored again, making it a 5-2 Sioux City lead following the Chris Herrmann RBI single off X’s Kent Hasler sent home Keon Broxton. The one run in the eighth wasn’t enough as the X’s dethroned the Monarchs, with X’s Sean Rackoski (4) earning the save after a shutout bottom of the ninth. It was the fourth win for Sioux City over Kansas City this season in four tries. Bates now has 63 punchouts on the season to lead the American Association.
The Explorers continue their nine-game trip with game two of a three-game series against the Kansas City Monarchs Wednesday morning with a first pitch at 11:00 am. Sioux City returns home Tuesday, June 27 for the first game of a three-game series with the Sioux Falls Canaries. Tickets for the season can be purchased online at XSBaseball.com, in person at the Lewis and Clark Park Box Office or by calling 712-277-WINS. You can catch all the X’s action on aabaseball.tv and on radio at KSCJ 94.9 FM and 1360 AM.