By Brendan Macgranachan
August 18, 2013, Winnipeg, MB (ISN) – They waited until the eighth inning but the Winnipeg Goldeyes’ offence finally got the job done. Unable to manufacture any offence for most of the game, the Goldeyes rallied and scored three times in the eighth on their way a 3-1 victory against the Kansas City T-Bones in Winnipeg on Sunday afternoon.
Matt Jackson gave Winnipeg a fantastic start on the mound and kept the Goldeyes in the game all afternoon. Jackson struck out 11 T-Bones in 7 2/3 innings but received a no decision after leaving the game down 1-0. The run against Jackson was unearned.
“Coming off an eight inning performance in Sioux City, I wasn’t expecting to get another stellar eight innings out of him today,” said Goldeyes manager Rick Forney. “He had excellent command on both sides of the plate.”
It was a big win for the Goldeyes, who needed it to keep pace in the American Association wild card race. They remain 2 ½ games back of the Gary SouthShore RailCats, who beat the Sioux Falls Canaries 2-1 on Sunday.
Offence was at a premium at Shaw Park in the series finale. Jackson recorded six strikeouts through the first four innings but Winnipeg was unable to get him any run support. The game remained scoreless through six and the Goldeyes stranded a pair of runners in each the fourth, fifth, and sixth inning.
The T-Bones would scratch a run across with two outs in the seventh inning. With Trevor Coleman at first, Anthony Davis hit a soft liner into right field and Coleman attempted to go first to third on the hit. The throw from Fehlandt Lentini appeared to beat him to the bag but the ball skipped away from Goldeyes third baseman Yurendell de Caster and Coleman would score on the error charged to Lentini.
In the eighth, Ray Sadler drew a leadoff walk off Kansas City reliever Sean Toler. The next batter, Josh Mazzola, showed bunt early in the at-bat but Toler fell behind 2-0. Manager Rick Forney took the bunt sign off and on 3-1, Mazzola rewarded the decision with a double to the gap in left centre field to score Sadler and tie the game.
Casey Haerther would follow that up with a single that scooted underneath the glove of Kansas City third baseman Brandon Jones. That would bring home Mazzola and give the Goldeyes their first lead of the afternoon. An RBI single from Luis Alen extended the lead to 3-1 and the Goldeyes avoided a series sweep with the win.
Brendan Lafferty threw one pitch out of the Goldeyes bullpen to earn the win. He finished off the eighth for Jackson, who allowed only five hits in his start. Jackson’s 11 strikeouts are the second most by a Winnipeg starter this season.
Chris Kissock earned his first save of the season by pitching a 1-2-3 ninth inning. He closed the game in place of the regular closer Patrick Keating, who was unavailable Sunday after pitching two innings the previous night.
Toler took the loss for the T-Bones. He gave up two earned runs and did not record an out in the game.
The Goldeyes continue to chase down a playoff spot tomorrow when they open up a four game series against the St. Paul Saints in Minnesota. First pitch is set for 7 p.m. and you can catch all the action with Paul Edmonds on TSN 1290.