Leading 7-0 through two innings, Gary failed to hang on to the rubber game vs. Sioux City on Sunday afternoon, falling 10-9 to the Explorers in the finale of a seven-game homestand. Sunday’s seven-run advantage through two innings was Gary’s largest lead relinquished this season and dropped the RailCats to 4-3 in their seven-game homestand.
Colin Willis gave the RailCats a 3-0 lead in the bottom of the first with a three-run, opposite field homer to left-center, giving Gary the opening lead for the first time in the series. Willis’ homer was his second of the year and the second homer hit by the RailCats at U.S. Steel Yard.
Gary (13-11) extended their lead to 7-0 with four two-out runs in the second. Chase Harris pulled his first home run of the season down the left field line, giving the RailCats their first multi-homer game. Frank Martinez put Gary in front by six with a two-run double down the left field line before Alex Crosby increased the RailCats lead to seven with an RBI single to center. Crosby’s RBI single also extended his personal-best on-base streak to nine.
Three consecutive two-out RBI singles from Sioux City (14-7) in the top of the fourth cut Gary’s lead to four. Former Chicago Cubs third baseman Josh Vitters gave the Explorers their first run of the game before Dylan Kelly and Brandon Alvarez followed with RBI singles of their own.
The RailCats went in front 9-3 with two more runs in the fifth. Kris Goodman brought in Ryan Fitzgerald with an RBI fielder’s choice before Anthony Cheky Jr. plated Gary’s final run with an RBI double.
The Explores cut the RailCats lead to five with a run in the sixth. Michael Lang drove in the first of his five runs with an RBI infield single, scoring Dylan Kelly.
Sioux City tied the game at 9-9 with five runs in the top of the seventh. Kelly brought home the first run of the inning with a bases-loaded walk, making it 9-5. Behind in the count 0-2 with two outs, Michael Lang tied the game with a grand slam to left-center.
The Explorers took a 10-9 lead, their first of the day, in the top of the eighth on Nate Samson’s leadoff home run. The 2016 American Association Player of the Year finished the series with at least two hits in each game after leading off the inning with his first homer of the season.
Carlos Misell (0-1) was charged with the loss in his fourth appearance of the year. Misell allowed two runs on one hit and struck out three in two innings. Kevin McCanna earned the win with three innings of relief. McCanna yielded just one hit and a walk and struck out three to finish the game.
The RailCats begin a seven-game road trip on Monday at 7:05 p.m. against the Sioux Falls Canaries. 2016 All-Star Charle Rosario (2-2, 3.40) squares up against RHP Grady Wood (0-1, 4.33) in the series opener from Sioux Falls Stadium in South Dakota.
Gary returns home to U.S. Steel Yard on Monday, June 19 for the start of a three-game series vs. Sioux City. First pitch against the Explorers is at 7:10 p.m. Monday’s game is another MetroPCS Monday. Visit your nearest Northwest Indiana MetroPCS location for a reserved seat ticket voucher to Monday’s game.
Jared Shlensky and Austin Anderson bring you all 100 RailCats games this season on WEFM (95.9FM) and online at railcatsbaseball.com. Fans can purchase tickets for RailCats home games by calling (219) 882-BALL or online at railcatsbaseball.com. The RailCats box office is open Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
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