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Getting to CHS Field

Five Run Fifth Propels Saints To Home Opener Victory, 6-4 Over Dogs

ST. PAUL, MN May 21, 2018

Through the first four innings the St. Paul Saints had trouble figuring out Chicago Dogs starter Connor Root.  It was the second time through the order, however, where the Saints began to figure him out and a five run fifth was enough for a 6-4 victory on Monday afternoon during the Saints home opener at CHS Field in front of 8,122.  The win improves the Saints to 3-1 on the season.


          With the Saints trailing 1-0 in the fifth Jayce Boyd led off with a single to right.  Noah Perio Jr. then slugged a double to left-center putting runners at second and third.  Perio Jr. finished the day 3-4 and is 8-18 on the season.  Dante Bichette Jr., who joined Perio Jr. as the only Saints to collect a hit in all four games, singled both runners home to give the Saints a 2-1 lead.  After back-to-back strikeouts Josh Allen started a two-out rally with a single to left moving Bichette Jr. to second.  A walk to Richard Prigatano loaded the bases and Max Murphy unloaded them with a double to right giving the Saints a 5-1 lead.  Murphy went 2-4 with a double and three RBI.


          Saints starter Matt Solter was solid through the first five innings.  He allowed a first inning run when he walked leadoff hitter Kyle Gaedele.  A groundout moved Gaedele to second and, with two outs, Craig Maddox singled him home.  Solter would settle down and put up zeroes in the second through fifth. 


          In the sixth Solter appeared to tire a little when he loaded the bases by walking Matt Telesco, gave up a single to Maddox, and walked Wilfredo Rodriguez.  Solter departed for reliever Beck Wheeler who immediately got a double play ground out that plated a run to make it 5-2.  A hit by pitch and an RBI single by Michael Baca made it 5-3.  Solter would go 5.0+ and give up three runs on four hits while walking four and striking out three.


          The teams traded runs after that with the Saints picking up a run in the bottom of the seventh when Kes Carter reached on an infield single, advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Allen, and scored on Prigatano’s RBI single making it 6-3 Saints.


          The Dogs answered with a run in the eighth off of reliever Mike Devine.  With one out Matt Dean singled and went to third on a Joe Benson single.  Baca’s sacrifice fly scored Dean.


          Tom Wilhelmsen closed it out in the ninth for his first save of the season.


          The same two teams meet in the second game of the three-game series on Tuesday evening at 7:05 p.m.  The Saints send RHP Vinny Nittoli (NR) against Dogs LHP Tommy Thorpe (NR).  The Saints unveil Monument Pork, presented by CHS, as they induct three pigs: The Saint (1993), Notorious P.I.G. - Piggy Smalls (2003), and Little Red Porkette (2016).  The first 1,500 fans in attendance will receive a Saints Ball Pig Triple Bobble presented by CHS.  The game can be seen on the Saints Cable Network, cable access channels in and around the Twin Cities, and heard on Alt 93.3 FM.