WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes (21-20) beat the Sioux Falls Canaries 5-4 at Shaw Park on Saturday evening.
Trailing 4-3 in the bottom of the fifth inning, Josh Romanski singled to right field with one out. Reggie Abercrombie followed with a single to right. As Romanski was advancing from first to third base, Sioux Falls’ right fielder Jabari Henry’s throw to third bounced into the stands and allowed Romanski to score the tying run.
“Really good baseball game, and well pitched,” said Goldeyes’ manager Rick Forney. “Edwin had a great bounce back effort. He’s been scuffling lately, but he gave us seven good innings. Victor and Chaffee were Victor and Chaffee. It’s been a bit of a battle to get consistency from our starting pitchers. If we can get these guys to settle in a bit, we feel good about our bullpen, and we think we have an offence that can produce runs at a decent clip.”
In the bottom of the seventh, Jordan Ebert led off with a single to left on an 0-2 count. Ebert took second on a passed ball and advanced to third on an Andrew Sohn sacrifice bunt. After David Rohm walked, Romanski drove in Ebert on a sacrifice fly to left field that gave Winnipeg a 5-4 lead.
Victor Capellan relieved Edwin Carl in the top of the eighth inning and retired the side in order. Ryan Chaffee struck out two during a perfect ninth to notch his league-leading 12th save of the year.
Carl, Capellan, and Chaffee combined to retire the final 16 Canaries’ hitters in a row.
The Goldeyes scored multiple runs in the first inning for a second straight game. Sohn led off with a walk, took second on a sharp groundball to first from Rohm, and scored when Romanski lined a single down the right field line. The single extended Romanski’s hitting streak to 13 games, matching a career-high set earlier this year. Abercrombie worked a full-count walk, while a groundout to second from Shawn Pleffner put runners on second and third with two outs. David Bergin then ripped a full-count single to left that scored Romanski and Abercrombie to make it 3-0.
The Canaries chipped away in the top of the second when Chris Jacobs led off with a line drive home run off the scoreboard in right-centre field.
In the top of the third, Brett Marr singled with one out, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and scored on a two-out, RBI single to right from Blake Schmit. Burt Reynolds followed with a two-run home run to left that put Sioux Falls ahead 4-3.
Carl (3-1) earned the win, allowing four earned runs on five hits in seven innings. Carl walked none and tied a season-high with eight strikeouts.
Sioux Falls’ starter Joe Bircher took a no-decision, allowing four runs, three earned, on five hits in six innings. Bircher walked three and struck out one. It was Bircher’s 27th quality start (three earned runs or less and at least six innings pitched) since joining Sioux Falls in 2014 in which he did not earn the win.
Dylan Thompson (1-1) took the loss for the Canaries, allowing the go-ahead, unearned run in the bottom of the seventh.
Pleffner singled in the bottom of the eighth, extending his hitting streak to a career-high 10 games. Pleffner had a nine-game hitting streak during his rookie professional season in 2012 while playing for the Short Season-A New York-Penn League’s Auburn Doubledays (Washington Nationals’ organization).
The series concludes Sunday afternoon at 1:05 p.m. Kevin McGovern (5-2, 2.95) faces right-hander Bryce Morrow (1-2, 4.47).
Tickets for all Goldeyes’ home games are on sale now by calling 1-855-GOLDEYE, visiting www.ticketmaster.ca, or visiting any Ticketmaster location, including the box office at Shaw Park.
For information on Winnipeg Goldeyes’ season tickets, 10-game mini packs, and group outings, call the Goldeyes’ office at (204) 982-BASE or visit the Goldeyes’ official website at www.goldeyes.com