Kramer Sneed Stymies Former Mate for Second Time, Explorers Win 4-2
The Sioux City Explorers had a tough weekend, being swept by Central Division rival Kansas City and turned to former St. Paul Saints starter Kramer Sneed to end the slide. For the second time in a week, the left-hander handcuffed his former mates, tossing seven outstanding innings in the Explorers 4-2 victory. LeVon Washington led the offense with a run and an RBI and Bubby Rossman drove in three runs to help aid the victory.
After a scoreless first inning, the Saints would take the lead in the top of the second. Anthony Gallas led off the inning by hitting his ninth home run of the season.
In the bottom half of the inning, the Explorers responded against St. Paul starter Jason Creasy. LeVon Washington and Dylan Kelly led off with back-to-back singles. Two batters later, Jonathan Gonzalez walked to load the bases. Bubby Rossman then worked the count full before lining a double to the wall in center that cleared the bases and gave Sioux City a 3-1 lead.
In the seventh, the Sioux City Explorers extended their lead to three. Connor Little retired the first two batters of the inning, but Joe Bennie kept the inning alive by drawing a walk. He then scored on a hit by Washington to make it 4-1.
After giving up the run in the second, Kramer Sneed (2-1) was in complete command. He allowed just three-singles over the final five innings of work, using his array of pitches to keep the Saints off balance. Sneed would leave after seven. He allowed 6-hits, a walk, and an earned run. He also struck out 6.
In the eighth, Kevin McCanna took over and St. Paul scored a run. The Explorers reliever retired the first two batters, but Brady Shoemaker doubled to keep the inning alive. Gallas followed by lining a single into left that scored Shoemaker to make it 4-2. That would be the final.
In the ninth, PJ Francescon took over. He gave up a two out double, but got a ground out to close out the game. That was his 10th save of the season.
LeVon Washington was 2-4 with a run and an RBI for the Explorers. Dylan Kelly finished 2-3 with a run and Bubby Rossman was 1-4 with 3-RBI. The Saints offense was led by Anthony Gallas, who was 3-4 with a run and 2-RBI.
These two teams continue their three-game set on Tuesday. The Saints send RHP Mark Hamburger (7-1, 3,04) to the mound looking for his American Association leading eighth victory. He will be opposed by LHP Cody Forsythe (3-2, 4.47). First pitch is scheduled for 7:05.
By Robert Pannier