HELENA, MT - The Helena Brewers closed out the 2016 season on Thursday night at Kindrick Legion Field, falling to the Billings Mustangs by a final score of 7-1.
Ronnie Gideon provided the lone spark, launching his 17th home run of the season to finish 2016 as the Pioneer League home run king.
Gideon wasn't originally going to play, according to Manager Nestor Corredor, but when Ogden's Cody Thomas hit his 16th home run on Wednesday night, the Brewers skipper decided to give Gideon one last crack at taking the crown. The DH went yard in his second at bat, cutting the Billings lead to 4-1, but the Brewers could find just one hit the rest of the night.
Billings got on the board first, scoring three unearned runs in the top of the third inning, spoiling what was otherwise a solid final appearance for Gentry Fortuno. The right-hander allowed just one earned run in four innings.
Nattino Diplan pitched the last five innings for the Brewers, allowing just one earned run on four hits. He finished the night with four strikeouts.
With the defeat, the Brewers finish the season with a record of 28-46. Billings, meanwhile, will head to Great Falls to begin the first round of the Pioneer League playoffs on Friday night at Centene Stadium.
The Brewers will return to Kindrick Legion Field next June. Be sure to check helenabrewers.net throughout the offseason for updates and the release of the 2017 schedule.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.