Saints Closer Tanner Kiest Earns Final American Association Pointstreak Pitcher of the Week Honors
ST. PAUL, MN - If Tanner Kiest pitches like he did over the final week of the regular season the St. Paul Saints may wind up calling themselves champions. With the intensity of each game climbing to new heights over the last week of the season, Kiest helped earn the Saints their fourth playoff berth in five seasons. His success in high-leverage innings earned Kiest the American Association Pointstreak Pitcher of the Week for the week of August 26-September 1.
Kiest pitched in four games earning a save in each appearance. In 4.1 innings pitched he allowed just one run on two hits while walking four and striking out seven. In his first two appearances of the week he helped the Saints hang on to two, one-run victories, which has become a staple of the 2019 team.
Kiest came over in a trade with the Milwaukee Milkmen on August 8 and has been a big reason the Saints surged in the final three weeks of the season. Overall, Kiest is 1-2 with a 2.28 ERA and nine saves, all with the Saints, in 44 relief appearances. In 47.1 innings pitched he has walked 28 and struck out 66 while opponents are hitting .213 against him. He has given up a run in just eight of 55 appearances. Since joining the Saints he is 0-1 with a 3.38 ERA with nine saves in 13 appearances. In 16.0 innings he has walked 11 and struck out 25 while opponents are hitting .211 against him.
Kiest was originally selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 27th round of the 2013 draft out of Riverside (CA) Community College, but did not sign. He attended Chaffey (CA) College in 2014 and was taken by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 28th round that year. Kiest was assigned to the Gulf Coast League and went 1-0 with an 8.22 ERA in nine relief appearances. In 7.2 innings pitched he walked 16 and struck out six while opponents hit .172 against him.
He went back to the GCL in 2015 and improved going 2-0 with a 4.67 ERA in 12 relief appearances. In 17.1 innings pitched he walked 17 and struck out 18 while opponents hit .210 against him.
Following his release from the Phillies, Kiest spent 2016 with three separate Independent League teams in three different leagues. He began with the Sussex County Miners of the Can-Am League and didn't accumulate a record with a 7.50 ERA in three relief appearances. He was released in early June and signed by the Lincoln Saltdogs of the American Association on June 13. He pitched in just two games allowing just a hit and not giving up a run in 2.0 innings of work. He was released by the Saltdogs and signed by the Florence Freedom in the Frontier League at the end of June. He pitched in eight games for the Freedom going 0-0 with a 6.00 ERA in 9.0 innings while walking eight and striking out 15.
In 2017 Kiest pitched in the United Shore Baseball League for the Eastside Diamond Hoppers. He went 0-1 with a 3.43 ERA in 10 games. In 42.0 innings pitched he walked 35 and struck out 78. While there he caught the eye of the Minnesota Twins when he threw the leagues fastest pitch, at 99 miles per hour.
The Twins purchased Kiest's contract and assigned him to the Single-A Cedar Rapids Kernels in 2018. He went 0-1 with a 7.98 ERA in seven games (two starts). In 14.2 innings pitched he walked 14 and struck out 14 while opponents hit .288 against him.
This is the second Pitcher of the Week Award for the Saints in 2019 and their seventh weekly honor of the season. Eddie Medina earned the Pitcher of the Week award in back-to-back weeks for the weeks of May 20-26 and May 27-June 2. Murphy earned two Player of the Week awards, June 16-23 and July 1-7, Brady Shoemaker earned the honor from June 24-30 and Josh Allen received the award for the week of June 8-14.
Pointstreak provides technology driven sports management and business solutions designed to streamline operations while facilitating and enhancing the sport participant, fan and media experience. Pointstreak's product line includes solutions for professional, collegiate, and junior sports leagues as well as for amateur and recreational sports leagues. More information can be found on Pointstreak's website at www.pointstreaksolutions.com or www.pointstreak.com.
• Discuss this story on the American Association message board...
American Association Stories from September 2, 2019
- American Association Game Recaps - AA
- RedHawks to Start 2019 Aa Playoffs at Home against St. Paul Saints - Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks
- RedHawks Wrap up Regular Season and Now It's on to the Playoffs - Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks
- Explorers Swing into the Playoffs - Kansas City T-Bones
- 'Roaders Win, Fall Short of Playoffs - Cleburne Railroaders
- Dogs Drop Season Finale to St. Paul, Finish 59-41 - Chicago Dogs
- Goldeyes Finish Season with Win - Winnipeg Goldeyes
- Saints North Champs, Finish with Top Record in League, Win Finale 13-8 - St. Paul Saints
- Milkmen Finish off the Season with a Win - Milwaukee Milkmen
- RailCats End Season with First Home Sweep, Shutout Saltdogs, 3-0 - Gary SouthShore Railcats
- 'Dogs Season Ends with Loss to RailCats - Lincoln Saltdogs
- Victor Roache Earns Third Player of the Week Honor - Chicago Dogs
- Saints Closer Tanner Kiest Earns Final American Association Pointstreak Pitcher of the Week Honors - St. Paul Saints
- Broussard Named AA Relief Pitcher of the Year; Colwell Named Postseason All-Star - Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks
- Samson Named to 2019 Post Season All Star Team - Sioux City Explorers
- Canaries' Lago Named Postseason All-Star - Sioux Falls Canaries
- Nester, Simpson Named Postseason All-Stars - Cleburne Railroaders
- Shoemaker and Motl Named to American Association Post-Season All-Star Team - St. Paul Saints
- Keon Barnum, Victor Roache Named Postseason American Association All-Stars - Chicago Dogs
- Lambson Voted League's Best Pitcher - Winnipeg Goldeyes
- Another Dramatic Game Ends in a Division Title - Kansas City T-Bones
- X's Unable to Take Advantage, Forcing Must Win Season Finale - Sioux City Explorers
- American Association Game Recaps - AA
The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.
Other Recent St. Paul Saints Stories
- CHS Field Receives American Association Playing Surface of the Year Honor
- Saints Wrap up 2020 Season with 7-4 Loss to RedHawks
- Devine Becomes Saints First Ever American Association Pitcher of the Year, Reynolds and Chinea Named Post-Season All-Stars
- Saints Notch Longest Winning Streak of Season with Fourth in a Row in 4-2 Victory over RedHawks
- Pitchers Pitch, Hit, and Score in Saints 4-3 Victory