Getting to CHS Field

You Will Get Nunn And Like It, Saints Blank RailCats 4-0 In Game 1 Of North Division Series

ST. PAUL, MN September 5, 2018

Game 1 of the North Division Series was worth the wait for the St. Paul Saints.  After getting rained out on Tuesday Saints starter Chris Nunn, who had started just four games in 195 appearances prior to joining the Saints on July 2, was masterful Wednesday at CHS Field.  He hurled a career high 8.0 shutout innings as the Saints blanked the Gary SouthShore Railcats 4-0 in front of 2,155.  The Saints take a 1-0 lead in the best-of-five series. 


          Nunn did not give up a hit in the first three innings, issuing just a one out walk in the second.  Meanwhile, his offense gave him all the run support he would need in the first when Kyle Barrett, who ended the season with a 27-game hitting streak, doubled down the left field line with one out.  Burt Reynolds followed with a two-run lined shot over the left field wall, his first of the playoffs, to give the Saints a 2-0 lead.


          With one out in the second, Justin O’Conner doubled off the wall in center just out of the reach of a leaping D.K. Carey.  O’Conner advanced to third on a groundout by Dan Motl.  On the first pitch to Joey Wong, RailCats starter Keaton Steele unleashed a wild pitch allowing O’Conner to score making it 3-0.


It was all Nunn after that.  In the fourth he gave up his first hit of the game, a leadoff double by Andy DeJesus.  Tillman Pugh sacrificed him to third, but Nunn fanned Colin Willis and got Ronnie Mitchell to fly out to end the inning.


          In the fifth, Nunn gave up a one out single to Randy Santiesteban, but struck out Alex Crosby and got Carey to fly out to center.


          The Saints gave Nunn some insurance in the sixth when Brady Shoemaker hit his first homer of the playoffs, a solo shot over the right field wall, to make it 4-0.


          Nunn retired 10 in a row from the fifth until the eighth when he walked Carey with two outs.  Will Savage doubled down the right field line putting runners at second and third.  Saints manager George Tsamis went out to the mound, but elected to leave Nunn in the gave and it proved to be the right decision.  Nunn struck out DeJesus to end the inning.  Nunn went aa career high 8.0 shutout innings on three hits while walking one and striking out six.


          In the ninth Beck Wheeler, who set the American Association record for most strikeouts by a reliever with 93, retired the side in order with two groundouts and a strikeout.


          The shutout for the Saints was their first in the playoffs since Game 1 of the Division Series in 2016 against the Winnipeg Goldeyes, which they won 1-0.


          The two teams meet in Game 2 of the North Division Series on Thursday night at CHS Field at 7:05 p.m.  The Saints send RHP Eddie Medina (9-5, 2.80) to the mound against RailCats LHP Lars Liguori (4-7, 3.52).  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.