Vincent Slams the Door Shut, Saints Hang on for 7-6 Win
OMAHA, NE - Bases loaded nobody out and up by a run. That was the situation Nick Vincent was called upon in the bottom of the eighth inning on Wednesday night at Werner Park. Not only did he get out of the jam without giving up a run, but he closed it out in the ninth as well as the St. Paul Saints hung on to beat the Omaha Storm Chasers 7-6. The win sends the Saints to 35-32, the first time they've been three-games over .500 all season.
With the Saints up 7-5 in the bottom of the eighth, Jovani Moran walked the leadoff batter of the inning, Nick Pratto. After 1.2 innings of relief, Moran was taken out for Ian Gibaut. He walked the first two hitters he faced to load the bases. That was followed by an RBI single from Sebastian Rivero scoring Edward Olivares to make it 7-6. That's when Vincent was called upon and he was up to the challenge as he struck out the three hitters he faced to end the inning.
In the ninth, Vincent struck out Lucius Fox to start off the inning and then got the #8 prospect in Major League Baseball, Bobby Witt Jr., to fly out to right. The #92 prospect in Major League Baseball, Nick Pratto, doubled off the wall in center. That brought up the man who was tied for the Triple-A East lead in hitting, Olivares. Vincent got him to fly out weakly to right to end the game.
For the second consecutive game the Saints jumped out on top in the first. Jose Miranda led off the game with a walk and took second on a wild pitch. Rob Refsnyder singled through the right side that drove home Miranda to give the Saints a 1-0 lead. Jake Cave reached on an infield single to the pitcher, Brandon Barker, whose under handed toss to first went over the head of Nick Pratto allowing Refsnyder to take third. A sacrifice fly from Brent Rooker gave the Saints a 2-0 lead.
In the second, Sherman Johnson gave the Saints a 3-0 lead with a solo homer to right, his second of the season.
The Storm Chasers, however, came roaring back in the third as Kyle Isbel led off with a double off the right field wall. Sebastian Rivero followed with an RBI single to make it 3-1. Two batters later Angelo Castellano tied it with a two-run blast to left, his second of the season.
The Storm Chasers took the lead in the third when Witt Jr. drilled a ball off the left center field wall just out of the reach of a leaping Cave. The ball ricocheted towards center field and Witt Jr. raced all the way around the bases for an inside the park home run, his first home run in Triple-A, giving the Storm Chasers a 4-3 lead.
With one out in the sixth, Jovani Moran came on in relief and walked the first batter he faced, Isbel. A balk sent Isbel to second and then Isbel stole third. A groundout by Sebastian Rivero scored Isbel putting the Storm Chasers up 5-3.
The Saints used the long ball in the seventh to regain the lead. Johnson led off the inning with a single to right and that was followed by a two-run homer from Miranda, a 411-foot blast to center his sixth of the season, tying the game at five. With one out, Cave singled to center. He finished the night 3-5 with a run scored. Keon Broxton, who entered the game in the sixth for Kyle Garlick, crushed a two-run, 405-foot homer to left-center, giving the Saints a 7-5 lead.
The same two teams meet in game three of the six-game series on Thursday night at Werner Park at 7:05 p.m. The Saints send RHP Matt Shoemaker (1-0, 0.00) to the mound against Storm Chasers RHP Eddie Butler (4-1, 4.20). The game can be heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM.
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