Getting to CHS Field

Saints Win 60th Game For Fourth Time In Franchise History, Lower Magic Number To Two In 4-3 Win Over RedHawks

ST. PAUL, MN August 28, 2019

The 2019 St. Paul Saints season is going to be remembered for one-run games.  For the 38th time in 94 games the Saints played a one-run game, setting a new American Association record.  They won yet another squeaker behind 7.1 innings from Chris Lee, in his first start for the Saints, and a bases clearing triple by Chris Baker in a 4-3 victory over the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks on Wednesday night at CHS Field in front of 6,900.  The Saints reduced their magic number to clinch a playoff spot to two and got to within 1.0 game of the North Division leading RedHawks.  The Saints also hold the tiebreaker over the RedHawks as they have won the season series by virtue of their win on Wednesday night.  The win improves the Saints to 60-35, the fourth time in franchise history they have won 60 games and third time in the last five years.

          The story of the night was Lee who, after 11 relief appearances, made his first start of the season.  Lee was coming off an incredible 5.0 perfect innings of relief on Saturday night in a 15-inning victory over the Chicago Dogs.  He didn’t allow a hit over the first two innings on Wednesday night.  Meanwhile, the Saints got on the board first in the second when three straight singles by John Silviano, Jeremy Martinez and Josh Allen, the latter plating a run, gave the Saints a 1-0 lead.

          Lee’s lone major hiccup came in the third when Joe Becht reached on a one out double to right-center.  Brennan Metzger followed with an RBI double to tie the game and Tim Colwell added an RBI single giving the RedHawks a 2-1 lead.  Lee retired the next two hitters to end the inning.

          From that point forth Lee allowed just three hits and didn’t have a man reach second until the eighth inning.  The Saints would take the lead in the fourth when Silviano led off with a walk.  Martinez then singled Silviano to second.  With two outs Chesny Young walked to load the bases and that brought up Baker.  He drilled a fly ball to deep left-center that just got over the glove of a diving Devan Ahart, clearing the bases and giving the Saints a 4-2 lead.

          The RedHawks made it interesting in the eighth when Colwell led off the inning with a double against Lee.  Ahart’s groundout to first moved Colwell to third and that was the last batter Lee faced.  Karch Kowalczyk came on in relief and Chris Jacobs greeted him with an RBI double down the third base line cutting the Saints lead to 4-3.  Kowalczyk got Correll Prime to hit a soft liner to third and struck out Leo Pina looking to end the inning.  Lee went 7.1 innings, the second longest start of his career, allowing three runs on six hits while walking two and striking out eight.

          In the ninth Tanner Kiest struck out Wilfredo Gimenez to start the inning, but then walked Carlos Garcia.  Garcia would swipe second and Martinez’ throw down to second glanced off of Garcia and went in shallow right-center, but Garcia didn’t notice until it was too late.  Kiest would strike out Joe Becht and then got Metzger on the first pitch of the at bat to hit a broken bat pop up to short to end the game.

          The Saints can clinch a playoff spot on Thursday night with a win and a loss by the Chicago Dogs to the Milwaukee Milkmen.

          The same two teams play game two of the three game series on Thursday night at CHS Field.  The Saints send RHP Ryan Zimmerman (7-3, 3.64) to the mound against RedHawks RHP Ryan Williams (8-1, 2.28).  It is the One Year Sologamy Anniversary.  The game can be heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM and seen on the Saints Cable Network, cable access channels in and around the Twin Cities area.