WINNIPEG, MB (July 2, 2013) – The St. Paul Saints starter lasted just two innings and had to rely on their bullpen the rest of the way. They blew a four run lead, scored a run in the ninth to tie and one in the 11th to earn a 9-8 victory over the Winnipeg Goldeyes on Tuesday night at Shaw Park.
With the Saints trailing 8-7 in the top of the ninth and Goldeyes closer Patrick Keating, who was 8-8 in save opportunities, in the ballgame the Saints found a way to tie the game. Dwight Childs doubled with one out. He moved to third on a groundout by Dan Kaczrowski. Adam Frost, who played for the Goldeyes in 2009, hit a 3-2 pitch down the third base line for the tying RBI triple. Joey Becker’s ground ball towards the middle of the diamond was backhanded by second baseman Nick Liles who just got Becker to end the inning.
In the top of the 11th Ole Sheldon led off by reaching on a fielding error by third baseman Amos Ramon. Jose Hernandez moved him to second with a sacrifice bunt. Childs then singled off of the glove of Ramon which moved Sheldon to third. Dan Kaczrowski’s slow chopper to short forced Childs at second, but wasn’t hit hard enough to turn two and Sheldon scored the go ahead run.
Saints reliever Matt Meyer, who pitched a scoreless 10th, pitched a perfect 11th inning to pick up his fourth win of the season.
Saints starter Luke Anderson lasted just 2.0 innings after giving up three runs on five hits and the Saints needed to use Dustin Klabunde for 3.0 innings (1 run), Billy Soule for 0.2 innings (4 runs), Mikey Mehlich for 3.2 innings (0 runs) and Meyer.
The Saints took a 4-1 lead in the second when Willie Cabrera led off with a double. Brandon Tripp walked and Sheldon tied the game at one with an RBI double. Hernandez and Childs had back-to-back RBI singles to make it 3-1 and after Kaczrowski laid down a sacrifice bunt to move Childs to second, Adam Frsot drove in the fourth run with an RBI groundout.
With the Saints leading 4-3 in the fourth Sheldon hit his first homer of the season, a solo shot to left-center, to make it 5-3.
In the fifth Frost collected the first of his three hits on the night with a leadoff single. Joey Becker doubled him home to make it 6-3 and Becker later scored on a sacrifice fly from Tripp to make it 7-3.
The lead didn’t last long as Amos Ramon hit his second homer of the night in the fifth, his sixth of the season, off of Klabunde to make it 7-4.
In the sixth Soule ran into trouble when he started the inning by giving up a single to Luis Alen. He moved to second on a wild pitch and went to third on a groundout. Nate Samson’s sacrifice fly made it 7-5. Soule walked Mike Coles, who then advanced to third on a poor pickoff throw by catcher Childs. Ramon’s RBI single made it 7-6. After Soule hit Ray Sadler, Mehlich entered the ballgame, but he gave up back-to-back singles to Casey Haerther and Josh Mazzola giving the Goldeyes an 8-7 lead. The runs were charged to Soule and Mehlich would pitch a perfect eighth and ninth allowing just two hits in a season high 3.1 innings pitched.
The same two teams meet in game two of the four game series on Wednesday night at 7:00 p.m. at Shaw Park. The Saints send RHP Anthony Claggett (5-1, 3.86) to the mound against Goldeyes LHP Pete Gehle (3-1, 4.08).