Getting to CHS Field

Saints Come Back From Five-Run Deficit, But Fall Short 8-7 To RailCats

ST. PAUL, MN June 15, 2019

The St. Paul Saints could have easily written the game off, trailing by five runs in a ballpark that doesn’t give up many of those leads.  They stormed back to score six in the seventh inning, but in the end they lost 8-7 to the Gary SouthShore RailCats on Saturday night at the U.S. Steel Yard.  The loss drops the Saints to 18-9 on the season.

          Tom Curtin was making his professional debut for the Saints and was magnificent in his first three innings of work allowing just a hit batter and an infield single.  In the fourth, however, things started to get away and it began with the dreaded leadoff walk.  Colin Willis followed with an RBI triple giving the RailCats a 1-0 lead.  A walk to Evan Marzilli was followed by a two-run double from Wilfredo Gimenez making it 3-0.  Ray Jones singled and Chase Dawson made it 4-0 with an RBI single.  Marcus Mooney became the seventh straight hitter to reach when he walked to load the bases.  That’s when Curtin settled down and got Alex Crosby to foul out and Andy DeJesus to fly out to shallow right.  Curtin departed for reliever Ryan Schlosser who got Randy Santiesteban to fly out to end the inning.

          The RailCats added to their lead in the sixth when Mooney singled with two outs and scored on a triple from Crosby to make it 5-0.

          That’s when the Saints mounted their comeback and took the lead in the seventh as the first eight men reached base.  With reliever Robbie Coursel on the mound Jeremy Martinez, Josh Allen and Chesny Young all singled to load the bases.  A two-run single by Joey Wong cut the Saints deficit to 5-2.  Coursel was removed from the game in favor of Jumpei Akanuma.  Max Murphy walked and Dan Motl singled to center scoring Young to make it 5-3.  Brady Shoemaker was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to cut the RailCats lead to one at 5-4.  Burt Reynolds then ripped a two-run double to left-center giving the Saints a 6-5 lead.  With one out an unlucky moment occurred for the Saints when Martinez hit a rocket back up the middle that glanced off Akanuma, ricocheted to the third baseman Santiesetban, who threw out Martinez without a run scoring.  That proved to be huge as Allen ended the inning with a line out to short.

          In the bottom of the inning Karch Kowalczyk made his Saints debut and he was greeted by an infield single to third by Santiesteban.  After a foul out, Kowalczyk walked Marzilli and hit Gimenez to load the bases.  An RBI single by Jones tied the game at six.  Dawson then hit an identical shot back to the mound that Martinez had in the top of the inning, but this time the ball ricocheted off Kowalczyk into shallow left-center scoring two runs and giving the RailCats an 8-6 lead.

          The Saints would pull to within a run in the eighth when Young led off with a single and Wong followed with a bunt single.  Murphy, however, grounded into a double play, the fourth of the night for the Saints and their league leading 35th of the year.  Motl then struck out, but the ball got by Gimenez and allowed Motl to reach while Young scored to pull the Saints within one.  Shoemaker then walked, but Reynolds struck out to end the inning.

          The same two teams meet in the finale of the three-game series on Sunday afternoon at 2:10 p.m.  The Saints send RHP Ryan Zimmerman (1-1, 5.54) to the mound against RailCats LHP Lars Liguori (3-2, 6.62).  The game can be heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM.