RailCats Rout Saints, 16-7, in Tagert's 700th Win with Gary
ST PAUL, Minn. - Gary made Manager Greg Tagert's 700th victory as the manager of the RailCats a special one after routing the St. Paul Saints, 16-7, in the middle game of the series on Saturday night. Gary scored 15 of their season-high 16 runs in the first three innings, had every starter reach base at least once and never trailed on the night.
Tagert, who has won three league championships with Gary (2005 & 2007, Northern League; 2013, American Association), wasn't even aware it was his 700th win as the RailCats manager until after Saturday's game.
"After the game, the team has our traditional hand out the 'Champ of the Game.' As Garrett Copeland was handing out the award, he surprised me with saying Greg Tagert and mentioned the 700th win," said Manager Greg Tagert. "Pitching Coach Alain Quijano made me aware of what it was about. It was a nice gesture by the club. My time in Gary has been tremendous and it shows how time flies over the years."
Gary (3-5) had the first four hitters of the night hit safely and scored twice to go up 2-0. Andy Paz brought home the first run of the game with an RBI single before Colin Willis followed with an RBI single to left for the first of his three hits and four RBIs.
St. Paul (6-2) cut the Gary lead to one on Jayce Boyd's two-out RBI single in the bottom of the first. However, the RailCats stormed right back in front with five more runs in the top of the second.
Andy De Jesus made his season debut and put Gary in front 3-1 with an RBI fielder's choice before Willis increased the RailCats lead to five with a two-run double. Copeland made it 6-1 with an RBI double before Wilfredo Gimenez brought him home with an RBI single off the right field wall.
The Saints responded again though with three more runs in the bottom of the second. An RBI single followed by a RailCats throwing error allowed Saint Paul to score two before Max Murphy recorded his league-leading 14th hit with a two-out RBI double for the final run of the inning.
Gary then brought 12 to the plate in the top of the third and responded with eight runs. D.K. Carey delivered the first run of the inning with an RBI single before De Jesus added to his RBI total with a two-run single. A wild pitch and a St. Paul fielding error allowed Gary to tack on two more runs before Willis brought home his final of four RBIs with an RBI double. Another St. Paul error allowed Gary to score two more runs, increasing their lead to 15-4.
However, St. Paul countered with three more runs in the bottom of the third. Dante Bichette Jr. went deep with a two-run home run to the lawn seats in left before Kes Carter pulled a solo home run down the right field line, cutting Gary's lead to 15-7.
Cole Fabio delivered the final run of the night with an RBI groundout, scoring Reggie Wilson from third. Wilson finished 3-for-5 with three doubles while Fabio extended his season-high on-base streak to eight with two walks and two runs.
Chris Powell (1-1) recorded the win in his third appearance of the season. Powell tossed two scoreless innings of relief, yielding two hits and two walks while striking out one. Jack Fowler, Myles Smith and Gabe Perez also threw scoreless outings out of the bullpen.
Jeff Malm (0-1) was charged with the loss in his second start of the year. The southpaw lasted just two innings, allowing seven runs on nine hits and a walk.
The RailCats conclude their three-game series against St. Paul and six-game road trip on Sunday at 5:05 p.m. against the St. Paul Saints. RHP Daniel Minor (1-0, 5.40) opposes Saints' RHP Vinny Nittoli (1-0, 0.00) in the series finale.
The RailCats return home on Monday, May 28th for the start of a season-long 10-game homestand. Monday's game is the inaugural regular-season game vs. the Chicago Dogs and is Ketchup Appreciation Day, a Memorial Day Matinee, All You Can Eat Night ($10 wristbands for hot dogs, popcorn and peanuts) and another MetroPCS Monday at U.S. Steel Yard.
Jared Shlensky and Brennan Mense bring you all 100 RailCats game this season on WEFM (95.9 FM) and online at railcatsbaseball.com. Ticket packages for the 2018 Gary SouthShore RailCats season are available online at railcatsbaseball.com and can also be purchased by calling the RailCats ticket line at (219) 882-BALL. The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
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