WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes (53-37) defeated the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks 14-4 at Shaw Park on Thursday night.
Trailing 1-0 in the bottom of the second inning, David Rohm singled to right with one out and scored the tying run when Wes Darvill ripped a triple to the right-centre field wall. Casio Grider, Tanner Murphy, Maikol Gonzalez, and Adam Heisler drew consecutive walks, with the latter two forcing in runs to give the Goldeyes a 2-1 lead.
“It feels great,” said Darvill. “To lose those two at the start of the series and pick up two at the end, that’s a testament to the team and the resiliency of these guys. This is a great group of guys who all come to the field every day and grind and battle, and everyone’s just doing what they can, taking care of their business, and it’s a lot of fun to play right now.”
Goldeyes’ starting pitcher Duke von Schamann (8-6) held the lead through the third and fourth innings. von Schamann worked around a leadoff error in the third when Keury de la Cruz hit into an inning-ending double play. In the fourth, Reggie Abercrombie made a running catch towards the centre field wall to rob KD Kang in support of von Schamann.
The Goldeyes exploded for 10 runs in the bottom of the fourth in which 15 batters came to the plate. Gonzalez drew a one-out walk and stole second base. After Heisler walked, Willie Cabrera ripped a single to left that scored Gonzalez. Back-to-back walks to Abercrombie and Josh Romanski forced in the Goldeyes’ fifth run.
Brett Zawacki relieved RedHawks’ starter Brian Ernst (3-4), and after retiring Rohm for the second out, issued a bases loaded walk to Darvill that made it 6-1. Casio Grider followed with a three-run double on a line drive to left-centre. Murphy plated Grider with a double into the right field corner. A walk to Gonzalez and a single to right from Heisler re-loaded the bases. Cabrera made it 11-1 with an infield single. With a full count on Abercrombie and the runners in motion, Abercrombie beat out a second straight infield hit on a groundball to shortstop that scored both Gonzalez and Heisler.
“That’s just everyone grinding at-bats,” said Darvill of the six walks in the inning. “That’s the name of the game, and that’s what we’ve got to do. That was a great inning for sure. I put a couple good swings on the ball. I was really happy with the walk I drew with the bases loaded to keep that inning going, and then, yeah, I put a few good swings the rest of the game.”
The RedHawks scored in the sixth on a two-out, RBI single from Dustin Geiger.
Darvill connected on a two-out, solo home run to right-centre in the bottom of the seventh for the Goldeyes’ final score.
Josh Mazzola hit a two-out solo home run in the eighth to cut the lead to 14-3.
von Schamann earned the win, allowing three earned runs on six hits in eight innings. von Schamann walked none and struck out four. It was the third time this season von Schamann completed eight innings, matching a career-high first set in 2012.
Ernst took the loss, allowing nine earned runs on five hits in three and one-third innings. Ernst walked nine and struck out four.
The RedHawks’ final run came in the top of the ninth inning on a groundball single to right from Mike Gilmartin. Kyle Anderson relieved Brandon Shimo and recorded a game-ending double play on Kes Carter.
Winnipeg totaled 11 walks in the win, running their league-leading total to 410. The American Association record is 438 walks set by the 2012 Gary SouthShore RailCats. Rohm collected multiple hits for a sixth consecutive game. All nine Goldeyes’ starters reached base at least twice. Shimo made his first appearance since August 14th versus Wichita. Abercrombie battled Dylan Mouzakes for a 16-pitch at bat in the bottom of the sixth which resulted in a foul popup to third.
With the win, the Goldeyes hold a two-game lead over the Laredo Lemurs for the American Association wild card. Laredo won two games Thursday, including the completion of a game suspended Wednesday. With St. Paul idle, the Goldeyes pulled within three games of the North Division lead. Both Winnipeg and St. Paul have 10 games remaining on their schedules, including three head-to-head games at CHS Field next week.
The Goldeyes remain home and begin a three-game series against the Sioux City Explorers Friday night. Kevin McGovern (7-3, 3.79) takes on right-hander Jacob Kuebler (2-2, 2.28) at 7:05 p.m.
Tickets for all Goldeyes’ home games are on sale now by calling 1-855-GOLDEYE, visiting www.goldeyes.com, or stopping by any Ticketmaster location, including the box office at Shaw Park. For information on season tickets, 10-Game Mini Packs, or group outings, call the Goldeyes’ office at (204) 982-2273.