Tapia Homer Helps RailCats Scratch Out Victory
By Ryan Zimmerman, Gary SouthShore RailCats
Gary, IN – Though the Gary SouthShore RailCats (4-2) looked down and out, the offense banded together and pulled off a swift sixth-inning comeback to defeat the Kansas City Monarchs (1-5) 8-6 in the series finale.
Initially, it looked as though the RailCats would cruise to an easy victory once again thanks to a five-run second inning. LG Castillo singled to lead it off, and the very next batter, Francisco Del Valle, roped an opposite-field double to left field for the game’s first run. Dorssys Paulino then walked, setting up Thomas Greely for a run-scoring double of his own.
As runners stood on the corners, a Michael Woodworth fielder’s choice chased Paulino home, and a Woodworth stolen base just moments later prompted a throwing error, plating Greely from third base for Woodworth to take over. Gio Díaz grounded out to second base to bring Woodworth home, capping off the rally and providing the RailCats a commanding early lead.
However, the Monarchs refused to go down easily, and they began chipping away at their deficit. Dylan Rosa led off the third inning with a solo home run, and a pair of two-baggers from Jacob Robson and Chris Herrmann pulled Kansas City within three. L.J. Hatch followed up in the fourth by providing a two-run, two-out double, cutting the Gary SouthShore advantage to one.
Though the RailCats kept the Monarchs off the board in the fifth, the visitors completed their comeback bid one frame later. Micker Adolfo leveled the score on a single, but despite Castillo throwing the would-be go-ahead run out at home plate on the play, Hatch stepped up and supplied another RBI knock, placing Kansas City ahead 6-5.
Down for the first time in the contest, the RailCats fired back right away in their half of the inning. Daniel Lingua drilled a leadoff double, and Woodworth’s ensuing single tied the game at six. After another stolen base, a double play threatened to halt the Gary SouthShore momentum, but Emmanuel Tapia had other plans. He crushed a two-run home run, his first as a RailCat, to turn the game back around and pull back in front 8-6.
From that point forward, the RailCats’ bullpen emerged to lock the game down. Jack Eisenbarger worked around a leadoff walk to blank the heart of the Monarchs order in the seventh inning, and Reyson Santos tossed a perfect eighth, setting up Matt Leon to shut the door in the ninth.
Kansas City managed two base runners with two outs, bringing the potential go-ahead run to the plate, but Leon buckled down and struck out Keon Broxton looking to seal the win.
The RailCats head to Haymarket Park tomorrow to take on the Lincoln Saltdogs at 7:05 p.m. as they kick off their first road trip of the season. All the action can be found via stream at aabaseball.tv, over the radio on 95.5 WEFM or the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network through the Mixlr app.