ST. PAUL, MN (July 14, 2021) - Maybe someone should develop a nickname for the St. Paul Saints with the way they are driving balls out of ballparks in the Triple-A East. A night after slugging six home runs, the Saints added five more and came from behind to defeat
ST. PAUL, MN (July 14, 2021) - Maybe someone should develop a nickname for the St. Paul Saints with the way they are driving balls out of ballparks in the Triple-A East. A night after slugging six home runs, the Saints added five more and came from behind to defeat the Columbus Clippers on Wednesday night at CHS Field in front of 5,376.
The Saints trailed 7-4 entering the seventh inning and promptly deposited three solo home runs in the inning. Keon Broxton and Jose Miranda went back-to-back, the fifth for each, making it 7-6. Two batters later Rooker continued his torrid home run pace, driving a solo homer over the right field wall his fourth in the last two games, tying the game at seven.
With one out in the eighth, Damek Tomscha was hit by a pitch. Drew Maggi, who homered in four straight games the last time the Saints were home, drilled a two-run homer to right, his eighth of the season and sixth in the last 12 games, to put the Saints up 9-7.
The Saints needed to hang on in the ninth as Nolan Jones led off with a single to left off Nick Vincent. With two outs, Gabriel Arias singled to right-center moving Jones to third. Oscar Gonzalez cut the Saints lead to a run with a single to right as Arias took third. Ryan Lavarnway then hit a deep ground ball to third that Willians Astudillo backed up on, and from the edge of the outfield grass through a one-hopper to first that Tomscha was able to pick by catching it in the palm of his glove to end the game.
The Saints went with a bullpen day and Ian Hamilton made his first professional start. His only mistake came in the third when Yu Chang hit a solo homer to left, his second of the season, making it 1-0. Hamilton went 3.0 innings allowing one run on one hit while walking one and striking out four.
The Saints got their first long ball of the night in the bottom half to take the lead. Maggi led off the inning with an infield single to short. The next hitter, Jimmy Kerrigan, deposited one over the right field wall, his eighth of the season, giving the Saints a 2-1 lead. Keon Broxton followed with a walk and two batters later Mitch Garver singled Broxton to third. A sacrifice fly by Brent Rooker put the Saints up 3-1.
The Clippers answered in the fourth against Ian Gibaut scoring three runs, all with two outs. Miller and Wilson Ramos started the inning with back-to-back singles. A fielder’s choice by Gabriel Arias put runners at the corners. Gibaut then got Oscar Gonzalez to pop out to shallow right for the second out, but then trouble ensued. Ryan Lavarnway doubled home a pair tying the game at three. Tyler Krieger then lined an RBI single to left-center putting the Clippers back up 4-3.
The Saints once again answered in the bottom of the inning when Keon Broxton came through with a two-out RBI single with runners at first and second tying the game at four.
The Clippers used the long ball to score their next three runs as Gabriel Arias hit a solo homer in the fifth, his sixth of the season, giving the Clippers a 5-4 lead.
In the sixth, Ryan Lavarnway led off with a walk and Tyler Krieger deposited one over the left field wall, his second of the season, making it 7-4.
The same two teams meet in game three of the six-game series on Thursday night at 7:05 p.m. The Saints send RHP Chandler Shepherd (3-4, 6.75) to the mound against Clippers RHP Zack Godley (3-2, 3.16). The game can be seen on Bally Sports North and heard on KFAN Plus, 96.7 FM.