Saints Lose Lead Late, Drop into Tie for First with Three Games Left
ST. PAUL, MN - The St. Paul Saints no longer control their own destiny to win the North Division. Four errors and a three-run homer in the eighth inning were enough to drop the Saints 7-5 to the Chicago Dogs on Friday night at CHS Field in front of 7,648. The loss, coupled with the Gary SouthShore RailCats win over the Sioux Falls Canaries, drops the Saints into a tie for first in the North. The Saints do not hold the tiebreaker by virtue of losing the season series to the RailCats 7-6.
With the Saints leading 5-4 heading into the eighth reliever Mike Devine gave up a leadoff single to Joe Benson. A wild pitch moved Benson up to second, but Devine was able to strikeout Tony Rosselli. Devine, however, walked the number eight hitter, Matt Dean. He retired pinch hitter Stephen Perez on a fly out to center and then was removed for closer Zack Jones. With the count full, and on the eighth pitch of the at bat, Wilson drilled a three-run homer over the left field wall, his sixth of the season, which proved to be the difference.
The Saints had several chances to blow the game open, but they managed just single runs over the first five innings, plus kept the Dogs in the game with a season high four errors. The Dogs jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first when Wilson reached on a throwing error by third baseman Dante Bichette Jr. A sacrifice moved him to second and Silva's RBI single put the Dogs on the board.
In the bottom of the inning the Saints tied it as Max Murphy led off with a single to left. Kyle Barrett extended his hitting streak to an American Association season tying high 24 games with a dribbler up the first base line that put runners at first and second. The 24-game hit streak is tied for the third longest in franchise history with his teammate Dante Bichette Jr. who had his streak end on August 25. Burt Reynolds tied the game at one with a single to right. With runners at first and second and nobody out, however, Zach Walters popped out and Bichette Jr. lined into a double play.
In the second the Saints took a 2-1 lead when the Saints loaded the bases with one out on a walk to Justin O'Conner, a Nathaniel Maggio single, a fielder's choice by Trevor Sealey, and a Joey Wong single. Murphy's sacrifice fly gave the Saints the lead.
In the third Walters doubled with one out and, with two outs, O'Conner singled him home making it 3-1.
The Dogs would get a solo homer from Dalton Blaser in the fourth, his fifth of the season, making it 3-2.
The Saints once again responded with a single run in the bottom of the inning when Sealey walked, moved to second on Wong's sacrifice and, with two outs, Barrett's single off the right field wall scored Sealey to make it 4-2. Barrett, however, was thrown out trying to go to second on the play.
The teams traded runs in the fifth when Mike Falsetti reached on an infield single to third with one out. Wilson drew a walk to put runners at first and second. Edwin Arroyo hit a grounder to short that Wong fielded, touched second, but his throw to first skipped by Maggio at first allowing Falsetti to score making it 4-3.
In the bottom of the inning Reynolds blasted a solo shot to left, his 19th of the season and 15th with the Saints, putting the Saints up 5-3.
The Dogs tacked on a run in the sixth when Benson singled to right, advanced to third on a double by Tony Rosselli, and scored on a groundout by Dean putting the Dogs within a run. A lead the Saints wouldn't be able to hold.
The Saints welcome in the Winnipeg Goldeyes for the final three regular season home games of the season. The Saints send RHP Jake Matthys (9-7, 3.98) to the mound against Goldeyes LHP Brennan Bernardino (1-3, 3.67). The Saints honor Hall of Famer Jack Morris as the first 1,500 fans in attendance receive a Jack Morris print giveaway presented by Killebrew Root Beer. The game can be seen on the Saints Cable Network, cable access channels in and around the Twin Cities, and heard on Alt 93.3 FM.
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American Association Stories from August 31, 2018
- Goldeyes Sweep RedHawks & Dominate in Season Closer at Shaw Park - Winnipeg Goldeyes
- AirHogs Swept in Sioux City, Head to Texas to Wrap 2018 - Texas AirHogs
- American Association Game Recaps - AA
- Saltdogs Rally to Win Home Finale - Lincoln Saltdogs
- Birds Comeback Falls Short in Home Finale - Sioux Falls Canaries
- Explorers Pick up 70th Win of Season - Sioux City Explorers
- Railroaders Swept in Lincoln - Cleburne Railroaders
- Saints Lose Lead Late, Drop into Tie for First with Three Games Left - St. Paul Saints
- Crosby's 4 RBIs Leads Gary to 6-5 Victory and Series Sweep - Gary SouthShore Railcats
- Eight-Run Fourth Dooms Wichita - Wichita Wingnuts
- T-Bones Closing in on Post-Season Play; Defeat Wichita 12-6 - Kansas City T-Bones
- Dogs to Host Gold Glove Charities Event Benefitting Children Fighting Cancer - Chicago Dogs
- Kansas City T-Bones Baseball Club to Seek New Local Ownership - Kansas City T-Bones
- Collier Heads into the Record Book in 6-0 Win - Kansas City T-Bones
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