FARGO, N.D. 6-26-2010 – The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks hit three fifth inning home runs and piled on late to earn a 14-6 win and a split of a four-game series Sunday afternoon against the Gary SouthShore RailCats at a windy Newman Outdoor Field.
The RailCats had a 2-0 lead after three innings Sunday, but Fargo tied the game in the fourth and Nic Jackson and Jesse Hoorelbeke hit back-to-back home runs to open a five-run fifth inning and give the RedHawks an insurmountable 7-2 lead. Fargo tacked on six insurance runs in the eighth, including another Hoorelbeke homer, before the RailCats scored four times without the benefit of a hit in the ninth.
Jeff Beachum doubled off Scott Fogelson (4-1) to lead off the RailCats second and went to third on a wild pitch. Two batters later, Yuki Matsumoto singled to left-center with the bases loaded to give the RailCats a 2-0 lead. Fargo answered with two runs in the bottom of the fourth and nearly had a third when the RailCats cut down Mike Coles trying to score from first. On the play, Coles ran over Matsumoto, knocking the ‘Cats catcher out of the game in a scary collision.
From that point on, the game belonged to the RedHawks. Fargo’s scoring outburst in the fifth came off reliever James Baker (1-2), who put two runners on after the back-to-back home runs to lead off the inning before Alan Rick hit a towering three-run blast to make it 7-2.
It was not a good day for any RailCats pitcher, as Nolan Nicholson started and labored through four innings, issuing six walks and allowing the two fourth inning runs. Nicholson was forced to throw 91 pitches in his four innings. Baker was charged with five earned runs and the loss, and Will Morgan gave up seven earned runs on six hits and two walks in his two inning RailCats debut.
The RailCats had only five hits in the game, doing most of their scoring in a strange ninth inning. Fargo-Moorhead’s Donnie Smith hit back-to-back RailCats to start the inning, then issued three straight walks, threw a wild pitch, and was chased after an error allowed a fourth run to score.
Rick led Fargo with three hits, while Hoorelbeke’s two home runs increased his league-leading total to 13. Coles had three RBI and went 2-for-4 from the top of the order. Fogelson beat the RailCats for the first time in five career starts, allowing four hits in 6.0 innings and striking out six.
The RailCats (20-17) finally return home Monday night for a 7 p.m. game against the Joliet Jackhammers (16-18) to open a three-game series. Right-hander Bear Bay (2-2, 3.38 ERA) will start for Joliet against a to-be-announced RailCats hurler. The game will be broadcast live on 89.1 FM, The Lakeshore, and online at www.railcatsbaseball.com.
Monday’s game is, of course, another NIEMI Associates Dollar Monday at U. S. Steel Yard, with one dollar hot dogs, pop, programs, merchandise and more available all night long. Plus, when you buy a ticket at the Steel Yard Box Office Monday, you’ll get a second for just one dollar. For tickets or more information, call 219.882.2255.
Notes: Sunday’s game concluded a stretch of 16-of-20 games on the road for the RailCats, who went 10-6 over that span … the ‘Cats end their seven-game road trip to Winnipeg and Fargo with a 4-3 record … reliever Brad Furnish made his second pinch-hitting appearance of the season in the ninth and earned one of the bases loaded walks to pick up his first career RBI … the RedHawks had eight extra-base hits in the game … Matsumoto was able to walk off the field after several minutes following the fourth inning collision.