WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes beat the Wichita Wingnuts 4-3 in 17 innings in Game Four of the American Association Championship Series at Shaw Park on Monday night.
The best-of-five series is tied 2-2.
Tied 3-3 in the bottom of the 17th inning, Casey Turgeon led off with an infield single. On a 1-2 count, David Rohm followed with a double into the right field corner that scored Turgeon with the winning run.
The win forces a decisive Game Five of the Championship Series on Tuesday night at 7:05 p.m. The 17 innings tied an American Association record set by the Fort Worth Cats and Pensacola Pelicans on August 3rd, 2007. Monday’s game also set an American Association record for longest game by duration at five hours and 59 minutes. The Goldeyes and Kansas City T-Bones held the previous record with a five-hour and 25-minute game at Shaw Park on July 15th of this year. The game also set a franchise record for longest game by duration. The Goldeyes’ previous record was a five-hour and 48-minute game versus Joliet on August 10th, 2003.
Trailing 3-2 in the bottom of the ninth inning, the Goldeyes scratched out the tying run to keep their 2017 season alive. Wes Darvill led off and reached on a popfly single down the left field line that broke off the glove of TJ Mittelstaedt. After Mason Katz sacrificed Darvill to second, Wingnuts’ reliever Ryan Kussmaul struck out Andrew Sohn for the second out of the inning. Turgeon then fell behind 0-2 before hitting a groundball to Mittelstaedt at third. Mittelstaedt completed the throw to first which appeared to end the game. However, a balk had been charged to Kussmaul prior to the pitch. Turgeon remained at bat, while Darvill was awarded third. After battling to a 1-2 count, Turgeon drove a double to left-centre that scored Darvill with the tying run.
Both clubs received stellar relief pitching in extra innings. Mikey O’Brien took over in the top of the 10th and worked six shutout frames with eight strikeouts. O’Brien stranded the go-ahead run in scoring position in four consecutive innings from the 12th-15th. Sohn made a leaping catch to take away a potential RBI single from Brennen Salgado for the final out in the top of the 13th.
Kussmaul worked a scoreless bottom of the 10th before Josh Goossen-Brown, James Campbell, and Seth Harvey each pitched two shutout innings.
Zack Dodson relieved O’Brien in the top of the 16th and struck out Brent Clevlen to strand the go-ahead run on second. Dodson (1-0) struck out two more in a scoreless 17th, and earned the win in relief.
Tyler Kane (0-1) took the loss for the Wingnuts.
In the bottom of the second, David Bergin drew a leadoff walk and was sacrificed to second by Darvill. Two batters later, Sohn launched a two-out, two-run homer down the left field line to give the Goldeyes a 2-0 lead.
Jacob Morris led off the top of the third with a line drive single to left and took second when Leo Vargas reached on an infield single. After Christian Stringer struck out, Martin Medina walked to load the bases. Darvill made a leaping catch at third on a line drive from Clelvlen for the second out before Mittelstaedt singled to centre to drive in Morris and Vargas with the tying runs.
Clevlen lined a single to left leading off the top of the fifth. Mittelstaedt was then robbed by Josh Romanski who made a diving catch in left on a line drive. Clevlen went first to third on a Matt Chavez single through the right side and scored the lead run on a line drive single to centre from Richard Prigatano.
Mitchell Lambson worked one and two-thirds perfect innings in relief of Goldeyes’ starter Charle Rosario. Victor Capellan threw a scoreless top of the eighth. Evan Rutckyj and Ryan Chaffee combined for a perfect ninth to keep the Goldeyes within one run.
Rosario took a no-decision, allowing three earned runs on six hits in five and one-third innings. Rosario walked two and struck out two.
Eddie Medina started for the Wingnuts and also took a no-decision, allowing two earned runs on four hits over six innings. Medina walked three and struck out five.
Turgeon and Rohm each had three hits. Darvill finished with two hits and has hit safely in all eight of the Goldeyes’ postseason games. With the win, the Goldeyes improved to 19-15 all-time when facing elimination in the postseason.
Game Five of the American Association Championship Series is Tuesday night at Shaw Park at 7:05 p.m. Edwin Carl (9-4) takes the mound for Winnipeg. Tickets 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