Five-Run First Spells Dooms for Explorers in Sioux Falls
Sioux Falls, SD (July 20, 2021) – A five run first inning was enough for the Sioux Falls Canaries to lead from start to finish as they handed the Sioux City Explorers a series opening 7-5 defeat.
The Explorers used an opener in the ballgame as they turned to Danny Hrbek to start things off. But Sioux Falls would get to him for five runs in the inning. A sacrifice fly out by Jabari Henry and a double from Zane Gurwitz put the Birds on top 2-0.
However after a walk and a strikeout it seemed like maybe the X’s could get out of the inning only being down by a pair. But with two strikes and two outs Jordan Ebert lined a ball over the left field fence for a three run home run to put the Canaries on top 5-0.
Hrbek (1-3) was handed the loss for his lone inning of work as he tossed one inning allowing five runs on four hits with one walk and one strikeout.
The X’s from there attempted to play catch up for the rest of the night but could never tie or take the lead from the Canaries.
A Joseph Monge single in the second got Sioux City on the board to make it 5-1. And a Jose Sermo opposite field two run homer in the third trimmed the deficit down to 5-3.
For Sermo it was his 55th home run as a Sioux City Explorer, now tying him for second place on the X’s all time list with Marty Neff. And it puts Sermo two homers away from Nolan Lane’s club record of 57.
Sioux Falls responded with a run in the bottom of the third on another two out RBI from Jordan Ebert, this time being a single.
The Canaries also scored on another two out hit in the sixth on a Henry single to make it a 7-3 ballgame. Sioux Falls plated five of their seven runs in the game with two outs in an inning.
Mitch Ghelfi started off the top of the seventh with his second home run of the season. And after reaching on a single and getting to third base, Chase Harris scored on a double play ball, one of the three that Sioux City hit into in the game, making it a 7-5 score.
Angel Ventura (5-5) picked up the victory for Sioux Falls as he is now 4-0 in four starts in his career against Sioux City. But he wasn’t as sharp as he usually has been in previous matchups as he went six innings allowing five runs on eleven hits while walking only one and striking out four.
In the ninth Caleb Frare earned his fifth save of the year, and third against Sioux City as he struck out the final three batters he faced after allowing a lead off single and a walk.
The X’s will look to break out of their three game slump on Wednesday against the Canaries with first pitch from the Bird Cage scheduled for 7:05 pm. Southpaw Brett Adcock (2-6, 5.12) gets the ball for the Explorers and will be countered by righty Charlie Hasty (1-0, 6.75) for the Canaries.
By Connor Ryan, Sioux City Explorers