Coe Strikes Out Career Tying High Nine, Saints End Four Game Skid With 7-0 VictoryST. PAUL, MN August 22, 2016
With two pitchers getting their contracts purchased by Major League organizations on Monday the St. Paul Saints pitching staff was a little depleted. Robert Coe made sure nearly everyone got the night off tossing 8.0 shutout innings tying a career high with nine strikeouts as the Saints blanked the second best team in the American Association, the Wichita Wingnuts, 7-0 on Monday night at CHS Field in front of 8,735. With the win the Saints improved to 56-32, ended their season tying high four game losing streak, and dropped their magic number to clinch a playoff berth to six.
Coe was spectacular from the get go and allowed just two runners as far as second base. In the third he gave up a single to Richard Prigatano and a one out single to Christian Stringer that put runners at first and second. The Saints would get a double play when Coe struck out Zach Cox and Prigatano was thrown out trying to steal third.
In the eighth Coe walked Stringer with one out and gave up a single to Cox to put runners at first and second. A fly out by Brent Clevlen and a strikeout of T.J. Mittelstaedt with Coe’s 125th pitch of the game, ended the inning. Coe went 8.0 shutout innings allowing six hits while walking two and striking out a career tying high nine. The only other time he struck out nine was on June 6, 2015 in a three-hit shutout of the Sioux City Explorers. Coe improved to 11-2 on the season and is five strikeouts shy of breaking the franchise record for strikeouts in a career. Coe has 314 strikeouts in his Saints career and Charlie Ruud (2005-09) has the mark at 318.
The Saints got all the offense they needed in the second inning when they didn’t collect a hit, but drew four walks to score two runs. Wingnuts starter Anthony Capra walked the first four batters he faced, including Ryan Cavan with the bases loaded, to make it 1-0 Saints. With one out Alonzo Harris made it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly.
In the third Tony Thomas hit a solo homer to left, his 12th of the season, to give the Saints a 3-0 lead.
In the fourth Capra walked the first two hitters he faced before being removed for reliever Jesse Pratt. Harris sacrificed the runners over and Breland Almadova made it 4-0 with a sacrifice fly. Thomas came through again with an RBI single to give the Saints a 5-0 advantage. Thomas finished the night 3-5 with a home run, two RBI and a run scored.
In the sixth Harris crushed a solo homer to left, his 14th of the season, to give the Saints a 6-0 lead. Harris went 3-3, falling a triple shy of the cycle, with two RBI and a run scored.
Tony Caldwell got into the home run act with a solo homer in the eighth, his 12th of the season. He went 2-3 with a double, RBI and a run scored.
The same two teams meet in game two of the three game series on Tuesday afternoon at 12:05 p.m. The Saints send LHP Corey Williams (1-1, 2.77) to the mound against Wingnuts RHP Alex Boshers (10-3, 3.46). It is YMCA Day. The game can be seen on the Saints Cable Network, cable access channels in the Twin Cities area, and heard on Club 1220 KLBB.