WINNIPEG, MB – The Winnipeg Goldeyes (20-20) beat the St. Paul Saints 5-1 at Shaw Park on Friday night.
Goldeyes’ starter Kevin McGovern (3-4) took the mound on three days of rest and earned the win. McGovern held the Saints to one earned run on four hits in six innings. McGovern walked one and struck out six, and is now just two strikeouts behind Richard Salazar for second on the American Association’s career list, as well as the most strikeouts in league history by a left-handed pitcher. Including the postseason, McGovern is now 5-1 with a 3.00 ERA in nine starts on three days of rest since joining the Goldeyes in 2016.
“Today was a really good game for us,” said McGovern. “I’m just happy to go out there and go as far as I can in the game. I just wanted to attack the strike zone and make sure that I made our defence play. Hopefully we’ll take this into the weekend.”
The win helped the Goldeyes snap a five-game losing streak, and an eight-game losing streak at home.
With two outs in the bottom of the first inning, Josh Romanski ripped a line drive home run to right-centre that gave Winnipeg a 1-0 lead.
The Saints (21-19) tied the game in the top of the fifth on an Aaron Gretz RBI single. McGovern faced first and second with no out following Gretz’s hit, but retired the next three batters in a row to keep the game tied.
In the bottom of the sixth, Reggie Abercrombie doubled to right-centre with one out. After the Saints intentionally walked Eric Aguilera, Josh Mazzola drew a four-pitch walk to load the bases. Grant Heyman roped a double into the right field corner that scored Abercrombie and Aguilera. Kevin Garcia followed with a line drive single to centre that scored Mazzola and Heyman.
Jack Charleston, Cameron McVey, and Victor Capellan each worked a scoreless inning in relief of McGovern. The trio combined to throw just 29 pitches in relief.
Ryan Zimmerman (1-1) started for the Saints and took the loss, allowing five earned runs on eight hits in five and one-third innings. Zimmerman walked two and struck out three.
Game three of the four-game series is Saturday evening at 6:05 p.m. Both teams have not yet announced their starting pitcher. Tickets for all Goldeyes’ home games are on sale now by visiting www.ticketmaster.ca/Goldeyes, or visiting any Ticketmaster location, including the box office at Shaw Park.