WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes (32-24) beat the St. Paul Saints 10-1 at Shaw Park on Monday night.
With the win, the Goldeyes take sole possession of first place in the American Association North Division for the first time this season. The Goldeyes have won 13 of their last 17 games.
“Our pitching was fantastic,” said Goldeyes’ manager Rick Forney. “Edwin was efficient with his strike throwing, and that’s a really good team he held at bay for seven and two-thirds innings. He’s been attacking the zone a lot better early in the count, and is being rewarded for it. He’s got four pitches going now. Minor came in and got his guy. Capellan hasn’t had much work lately, but he pitched well. We were off and running after Sohn went first to third, and had some really good situational hitting with the sac flies. Just a really good game.”
The Goldeyes scored five runs in the bottom of the first inning in support of starting pitcher Edwin Carl. Andrew Sohn was hit by a pitch leading off and took third when David Rohm singled up the middle. The hit extended Rohm’s career-best hitting streak to 15 games. Josh Romanski singled on a sharp groundball to left to score Sohn with the game’s first run. Reggie Abercrombie followed with a line drive, two-run double to centre field that plated Rohm and Romanski. After Shawn Pleffner and David Bergin drew walks to load the bases, Wes Darvill and Mason Katz hit back-to-back sacrifice flies. The Goldeyes have now outscored the opposition 69-12 this year in the first inning.
Carl (6-1) took the care of the rest, holding the Saints to one earned run on six hits over seven and two-thirds innings in the winning effort. Carl walked four, struck out three, and threw a Goldeyes’ season-high 134 pitches.
“It’s been awesome to have early run support,” said Carl. “It allows our staff to not necessarily have to be perfect and go to work. The first inning has a lot of momentum. Hopefully we can go and do the same thing for the rest of the season.”
Sohn led off the bottom of the second with a single through the right side and took second on a wild pitch. Romanski and Abercrombie walked to load the bases, and the Goldeyes stretched the lead to 6-0 when Pleffner lined a sacrifice fly to centre. Bergin then smashed a groundball that deflected off the glove of a diving Nate Hanson at third. The infield single scored Romanski with the Goldeyes’ seventh run.
Winnipeg’s defence supported Carl with a double play in the fourth. Maxx Garrett hit a groundball to Sohn at shortstop. Patrick Brady caught Sohn’s feed to second with his barehand before completing the double play at first.
Bergin and Darvill opened the bottom of the fifth with consecutive singles. Katz hit an opposite-field, three-run home run to right-centre that stacked the lead to 10-0.
“Everyone executed really well,” said Katz. “Carl went deep in the game, and gave our guys more rest after that series with Kansas City. Our lineup got them early. It’s a lot more relaxing when you’re 5-0 in the first.”
Carl held the Saints off the scoreboard until the top of the eighth when Brady Shoemaker hit a solo home run to centre. Daniel Minor relieved Carl with two outs in the eighth and struck out Kes Carter to strand runners on first and second.
Victor Capellan worked a scoreless top of the ninth to close out the win.
Ryan Zimmerman (3-4) started and took the loss for the Saints. Zimmerman allowed 10 earned runs on nine hits in five innings. Zimmerman walked four and struck out one.
Saints’ right fielder Breland Almadova was called on to pitch the bottom of the eighth and worked a scoreless frame.
Romanski has hit safely in 12 consecutive games. Katz has driven in 21 runs in his last 14 contests.
The series continues Tuesday night at Shaw Park at 7:05 p.m. Kevin McGovern (7-2, 2.32) faces right-hander Mark Hamburger (9-1, 3.04).
Tickets for all Goldeyes’ home games are on sale now by calling 1-855-GOLDEYE, visiting www.ticketmaster.ca/goldeyes, 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