Explorers Rally Falls Short in Winnipeg
By Austin Thomas, Sioux City Explorers
WINNIPEG, Manitoba – The Sioux City Explorers (32-32) couldn’t overcome an early eight-run deficit to the Winnipeg Goldeyes (26-37) Tuesday night, falling 9-8. The loss is the Explorers fourth in a row after Sioux City got off to a 7-3 start to the second half of the American Association season.
The Goldeyes scored the first runs of the game when Winnipeg’s Miles Simington and Chris Burgess came home on a Javeyan Williams single off Explorers starter Trenton Toplikar (4-2), giving the Goldeyes an early 2-0 lead.
Winnipeg carried the momentum into the third inning when Goldeyes Andy Armstrong crossed the plate on a Jacob
Bockelie single, extending the Winnipeg lead to 3-0. The Goldeyes added on when Winnipeg’s Max Murphy scored on a Simington double, making it 4-0 Goldeyes. Winnipeg continued to score when Goldeyes Bockelie came home on a Najee Gaskins sac fly, extending the lead to 5-0 Winnipeg. With two outs, Goldeyes Javeyan Williams sent a comebacker to the mound that hit Explorers Toplikar in the head, sending home Miles Simington and making it a 6-0 game. Toplikar walked off the field with assistance and underwent concussion protocol as Brenden Heiss relieved him on the mound.
After Winnipeg’s Keith Torres walked, Dayson Croes knocked a single off Sioux City’s Heiss, making it a 7-0 game. The Goldeyes scored one more run in the third when Winnipeg’s Torres scored on an Andy Armstrong single, making it an 8-0 game.
With the X’s seemingly out of it, Sioux City finally got on the board in the fourth when Explorers Matt Lloyd scored on a Kyle Kasser bases-loaded RBI single off Goldeyes pitcher Travis Seabrooke (5-4), who relieved starter RJ Martinez after two innings, making it an 8-1 game. The X’s tacked on two more when Sioux City’s Tyler Rando and Vince Fernandez came home on a fielding error from Winnipeg right fielder Max Murphy, cutting the deficit to 8-3.
After hitting a leadoff double in the fifth, Explorers Jake Sanford came home to score on an RBI single off the bat of Scott Ota, making it an 8-4 game.
In the bottom of the fifth, following an error by X’s third baseman Matt Lloyd and a stolen base, Goldeyes Andy Armstrong scored after a wild throw from Sioux City catcher Jake Ortega’s trying to catch Armstrong stealing third, making it 9-4 Winnipeg.
The Explorers kept chipping away in the seventh when X’s Sanford scored on a Chase Harris single off Goldeyes Seabrooke, cutting it to 9-5 Winnipeg. Sioux City’s Scott Ota then crossed the plate on a Matt Lloyd RBI single, closing the gap to three 9-6.
The Explorers had their last chance in the ninth inning and got one more when X’s Delvin Zinn scored on a Chase Harris two-out single off Goldeyes closer Samuel Adames. Sioux City made it a one-run game when Harris crossed the plate on a Tyler Rando single, closing the gap to 9-8. Unfortunately for the X’s, Winnipeg’s Adames struck out Sioux City’s Vince Fernandez to earn the save (8) and the game ended one short of an eight-run comeback.
The Explorers will face the Winnipeg Goldeyes at Shaw Park on Wednesday night in game two of the three game series with a first pitch at 6:35 p.m. Tickets for the season can be purchased online as 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.