Explorers beat RailCats

Explorers beat RailCats
May 20th, 2024 | xsbaseball.com

GARY, IN –  The Sioux City Explorers (4-6) had yet to hit two home runs in a game this season, but that all changed Monday night in Gary, Indiana. The club used a pair of blasts and a solid outing by Braunny Munoz (2-0) to take game one of a three-game series over the Gary SouthShore Railcats (3-7) at the Steel Yard.

The Steel Yard had the walls brought in from right field in 2021 to make the park more hitter friendly. In the first inning Scott Ota hit a solo home run that cleared the old wall in right field and then some to make it 1-0 off Railcats starter Deyni Olivero (0-1).

The X’s would explode for three more runs an inning later off Olivero. Daniel Perez was hit by a pitch and was followed by Nick Shumpert who would double to put runners at second and third. Jake Ortega delivered an RBI single past the bag at first to score both runners, and the Explorers had a 3-0 lead. Henderson Perez would bounce into a double play to temporarily slow the offense, but Chase Harris just missed a home run off the wall in left that he would turn into a triple to set up Sioux City with two outs. Daniel Lingua, facing his former team, would slap an infield single deep to short to score Harris to make it 4-0 Sioux City.

In the top of the fourth inning, the Explorers extended their lead with a solo homer to leftfield by Nick Shumpert to give Sioux City a 5-0 lead off Olivero.

Olivier Basabe would answer for the Railcats with a solo home run off Munoz to lead off the home half of the fourth inning, but the X’s right-hander would retire the next six batters before he exited the game after five innings.

Both benches and bullpens would clear in the top of the fifth after Olivero missed with a pitch up and over the head of John Nogowski. Jackson Valera was ejected from the game for the Railcats while Shumpert was sent off for Sioux City.

In the sixth, Gio Diaz doubled and was sent to third on a wild pitch by Evan Johnson. A sac fly off the bat of Basabe scored Diaz to cut the lead to 5-2. Johnson worked two innings, giving up one run before turning the ball over to Brandon Brosher who worked a scoreless eighth inning. The X’s would then turn to Zach Willeman who worked around a pair of singles as the Railcats batted the tying run in the bottom of the ninth to pick up his first save.

Box Score

The Explorers continue their first road trip of the season with game two of a three-game series Tuesday morning at 11:00 a.m. against the Gary SouthShore Railcats at the Steel Yard in Gary, Indiana. 


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